The first time we visited the progressive suburban creperie, we’d allowed ourselves just enough time to eat before the late evening movie. Nestled in the crook between the faux rusticana post-antique used junk store and the self-consciously over-exotic soap and bong shop, the restaurant was the most convenient place to grab a bite, since it was right across the street.
The front of the restaurant was so completely open as to seem abandoned, and indeed, there were no staff to greet us. Such lack of structure tends to give me a kind of social vertigo, which can result in extreme bouts of self-doubt, leading to panic attacks if not promptly seen to. “Should we sit down, or do we stand? Where should we stand? Is there a queue? Do we order up at the front, or is that just for paying? Should we ring something? Are they even open?”
I stumbled about like a lummox, and nearly knocked over the beverage machine before a waiter finally intervened. Maybe my lack of coordination endeared me to the staff, but our anonymity was compromised either way. Still, after we were seated the evening progressed in a manageable enough fashion.
Partially owing to our first positive experience, we called on the creperie again the following weekend, at the same time as our first visit. We had the same waiter, who said we looked familiar. “Yes, we came last week too.” Ah, that’s right. Same table? Sure, why not.