CoffeeShop Blues: 2015 Traveler's Edition - Page 19

Jeremy Frost fastens them to the floor, but I slide the metal bar up and give the doors a push. They move a bit, but don’t open. “So now the problem is Suzy,” I say, because I know Inge won’t leave her bike outside, but then Inge gives the doors a hard shove and they open. Inge goes to fetch her bike and I go to fetch my packs. We cross the school grounds and we are aware that we are visible in the waning light to any villagers who might be watching, so we quickly and quietly get the bike into the school and close the doors. Once inside we can hear a truck cruising slowly past the back side of the school where the construction trailer is, and we see it through the windows and we duck. “Do you think they saw us?” Inge whispers. I shrug. The truck stops and someone gets out of it. We hear voices, and we hold our breath, smiling at each other with wide eyes, but after a few minutes they get back into the truck and drive away. I show Inge the room with the mattresses. For some reason she flips a light switch, and it works—the lights come on—and then she quickly turns the switch back off so as not to alert the village that there are intruders in their village school. “Maybe I can block the window,” I say, and for the next ten minutes I arrange a mattress to cover the window and rags to fill in the cracks. I turn on the light and Inge creeps out the door to check it. She can see the light shining through cracks in the window despite my efforts but we use the light anyway when we need it. In the meantime we have our headlamps. In silence we arrange our kitchen on a table in the hallway. I prepare the tomatoes and the garlic while Inge boils the spaghetti on her cooking stove. After draining the hot water on the floor she adds what I’ve prepared with some olive oil and she gives me half of the pasta in my green plastic bowl and we have our dinner. We then retire to our little room, where we each have a double mattress bed. We stay up for a while chatting about our time 19