As I walk into the bathroom, I hear someone talking very excitedly into the phone in the closed-door stall. Curious, I listen in as I use the urinal.
Him: “Listen, baby, I’m here with my wife. How’s an hour sound?…Okay…Yea…Yea…No, that won’t work…Yea!…Okay, see you then.”
The look he gave me as he walked out of the stall and saw me washing my hands was one of first confusion and then fear. My expression nearly matched his as I realized this was the same man who just minutes ago I was serving onion soup and two Philadelphia sushi rolls to. I didn’t know this dude was my customer.
For the rest of the meal, the knot in my stomach made its way up into my throat as I saw this man affectionately kiss his wife, hold her hand with his left and feed his infant daughter steamed rice and cheerios with his right. I wonder if she had any idea. I wonder if their marriage was any good. I wonder if they laid in bed until 2 in the morning talking like my girlfriend and I do. I wonder if when he came back to the house he’d made a home, he showered before kissing his wife hello.
As they left, I heard the man say, “Okay, honey. I’ll catch up with you two at the house. I’ve gotta help Donald with something with his car.” She kissed him, smiled and walked out the front door and into her car. He stayed at the bar a few extra minutes and then jumped into his own car. I guess he’d thought ahead and brought two.
He was smiling too.