Mr. and Mrs. Kemper came into the restaurant every Thursday night at 5:30. They would start with a vodka gimlet with pickled mushrooms each and a small basket of crackers. Mrs. Kemper particularly liked the Club Crackers so I always made sure she had plenty. Mr. Kemper liked the stone ground wheat. They would both order the Chicken Kiev with the house salad and house dressing. They lingered over the cocktails and when Mr. Kemper gave me the slight nod, I would bring them their salads. Once the salads were served I started the order for the Kiev.
This was our routine for three years, they always sat at the same table and everyone knew that even if it wasn't my section, I still waited on them. We never exchanged many words and after the first couple weeks and I caught on, they didn't even have to place the order. I was just ready for them, cocktails and crackers on the table when they sat down.
You should have seen them. They were wonderful. He always held out the chair for her and helped her with her jacket when it was cold outside. Quite often they would hold hands across the table, and it was never that uncomfortable kind of forced romance of younger couples - just a steady, familiar kind of romance that must come with years of being together.
One week they didn't show up. We held the table for them, but they never arrived. The next week came and went without them. They never came in again, but we saved their table for months. I often wonder what happened, and deep in my heart I know, but I never was able to to find out for sure. Its 15 years later and I still hope they are off somewhere, having a vodka gimlet and holding hands.
Friday, November 11, 2005
A nice story from another blog, enjoy!