mister makoiu is usually the first one down to the lobby in the morning.
sometimes a bum will have wandered in and been allowed to sit or even sleep in one of the chairs by rack, the night clerk, if he was in a good mood.
sometimes, if this happens, the bum will be sitting in mister makolu’s favorite chair, the one beside the potted plant.
if the bum is awake, mister makolu will politely ask him to move to another chair, and 99 times out of 100 the bum will comply.
but if the bum is sleeping , mister makolu will let him be, 999 times out of 1000, and move to another chair, one approximately the same distance from the window as the one beside the potted plant.
in any event, mister makolu will sit down and begin looking out the window, whether the morning
is sunny or otherwise.
the next person down to the lobby is usually madame b, who will say good morning to mister makolu and take a chair within speaking distance of his.
the paper is late today, mister makolu will say.
madam b will smile and say, the newspapers went out of business thirty years ago, mister makolu, is there any news you were particularly interested in?
yes, the price of gold.
gold has been off the market for as long as mister makolu had been sitting in the lobby, but madame b will not say this. instead she will take out her phone, pretend to look at it and say, the price is unchanged.
thank you, mister makolu will say.
then mister makolu and madame might or might not discuss the weather.
next to appear will be professor barvis. usually, but not always, he will remember to greet mister makolu and madame b. he will take his seat, and consult his own phone, to see if there is any message from the committee of arts and sciences - which, does, in fact, still exist - regarding his paper on the incompatibility of dimensional-based and path-based fusion and expansion.
to date he has not heard from it.
the last regular to appear is miss arg. she does not have a favorite chair, but seems to sit randomly in the many available in the spacious lobby.
she, too, looks out the window as if waiting. if anyone asks her, which few do any more, she will say she is waiting for her prince.
she has been told many times, by the regular inhabitants and helpful strangers, that there are no more princes. glen, one of the maids, has even gave her a copy of the four volume “history of the rise and triumph of woman” by anna randle, but miss arg has never read past page fourteen.
rack, the night clerk, leans on the desk and looks out the window himself. he is waiting for suss, the morning clerk, who is often late, especially if it rains, as it often does in this part of the world.
and there you have it, my friend… humans…. waiting… always waiting… never satisfied…