Day of the Horchata

It’s hot out. It’s sweltering. The other day I walked into a tiny restaurant. It was painted bright yellow-orange and pink. It was darker inside, the sun somehow stopped right at the windows where the slightly ripped paper ads were stuck with bits of tape, listlessly hanging over almost-dusty generic Mexican decor plunked down on the faded windowsills. It was a bit cooler inside, but not really cold, like it is in an air-conditioned place.

The lady came out from a door in the back that connected to the short, well-varnished wooden bar where we sat on backless stools, wondering how we ever could sit on backless stools before, so deadly in their lack of comfort.

“Horchata,” I said. And she nodded and went back through the heavy dark door.

Soon she returned and put the drink before me.

It was rather wonderful. Silky, cold, fresh, just sweet enough. And the color, the color was of the moon on a hot night at the beach.

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