She noticed the gray hair that was starting to appear in his beard as she tapped her fingers on the wooden bar surface. He snuck a glance at her hands. Something familiar, but not. Stared at the ring for a fraction of a second, then turned away and fixed his attention on the bar maid for the next few minutes. Mojitos. The pint-size kind. The drinks are the same. Everything else is different.
-“How have you been?”
-“Good. You know….Busy….Working a lot,” she said.
She sipped on the mojito and swallowed some of the mint leaves. They tasted almost bitter. Or maybe she was imagining it.
-“You still at the same place?” he asked.
– “Yes.” She paused. Thought about what she should follow it up with. Decided against it.
– “And what are you doing?” She asked.
– “Working. Here and there. Mostly on my father’s business. Still traveling from time to time,” he paused. “Have you ever been to the Ivory Coast?”
She shook her head.
“It’s beautiful…. You should go some time,” he said.
She nodded, then glanced at her watch.
“You know, I should go, I have this thing in an hour and I need to change….,” she trailed off as he nodded, paid for the drinks and threw his jean jacket over one shoulder.
“You don’t have to, really,” she said. Trying to put some bills on the table.
“It’s OK,” he waved her off.
As they walked down the street, all the other chatter seemed to rush by them in one inaudible wave. She could only hear the distinct sound of her heels against the pavement.
She looked at him, but he was staring straight ahead.
“It’s nice out today, isn’t it?” she said and glanced up at the sky.
“Yeah,” he nodded. “Warmer than usual.” As they both looked up at the sun, partially ensconced in a large cloud.