Its a cool December morning when you arrive at work punching the computers on button looking around as you hang up your coat it hits you like a cool punch to the jaw, “damn it! You forgot lunch on the counter top at home!” Settling into your chair the day begins. An hour passes on, then two as you your workload grows so does the ache in your belly. Finally its lunch time and you are ready to explode. Flinching you grab your coat and head out the door into the brisk winter air. Firing up the car you flee the company parking lot in search of a good hearty meal.
Ten minutes later you arrive outside a strip mall with a Subway, Mucho Burrito and The Tea Palace. Thinking over your choices carefully you head for the door. Upon entering the door you the environment in front of you opens up to high ceilings gentle jazz music drifting across the room and chattering patrons in peaceful surroundings. Pausing you read through the elongated menu trying to pick out what will suit your hunger pains.
Half way down the second column you read “Bubble Tea” then quickly scan the flavors for Taro, your favorite for many years. Smiling inwardly you agree it wouldn’t be lunch out without a large Bubble Tea ($4.75) Those little round tapioca pudding balls at the bottom. Soft and chewy. You smile again reading the days lunch special. $6.95 gets you a panini and bowl of soup.
Inquiring about the three items that interest you the Veggie Melt, Vegetarian Corn Chowder and a Taro Bubble Tea you pleasantly learn they have a $9.99 special for all three. You exchange money for a number and wander off to find a seat near the fireplace.
Soon enough your 3-piece luncheon arrives at your table. Pushing the fat straw through the plastic covering the Taro Bubble Tea you pull back a thick drag on the liquid as it rises you watch the tapioca ball slide up entering your mouth. Chewing down on the ball produces instant gratification and an undoubtedly exuberant meal time. Next you pick up a spoon scooping up a pile of corn chowder. Blowing softly on the soup before slipping it onto your tongue where a kick of ginger penetrates through the soups broth giving you a surprising kick down your glands. Still smiling you pick up the sandwich wondering what extraordinary efforts have gone into its creation.
Peeling the ciabatta apart you peak inside the fresh grilled sandwich to find cheddar and mozzarella binding the banana peppers, tomatoes, green bell pepper slices, onions, olives and avocados together. Snapping it back together you place the sandwich between your teeth grinding down through the various lightly cooked morsels. Slowly you proceed through the chewing and swallowing as the flavors dance across your taste buds.
Unsure of what to indulge in next you continue forward through your meal vaguely recalling where your original lunch still sits in its brown paper bag on top of your counter top. Laughing to yourself you gently think you might forget your lunch more often with such a wonderful meal only ten minutes from work.