Stone steps lead up to a deep blue lit sign. “Blueberry”. You enter the building and take an elevator to the highest floor. You walk down the hallway past several doors to yours. You open it. It's a small room with high ceilings. A window with a twinkling cobalt view of the city to your right. A chair and a table with a lamp. A lo-fi song wafts faintly through the air. A soft linen napkin rests on your lap.
The music fades. A waiter enters the room carrying a plate covered with a silver dome. He places the dark ceramic in front of you and lifts the dome to reveal a small pedestal of blackened cedar. On top of which resides a plump radish, sliced into disks. The waiter leaves without a word. A new song plays quietly.
As there are no utensils, you reach forward and grab a piece of radish. The lamp illuminates the slice from behind and you can easily make out the vasculature therein. You bite into it crisply. There is no echo.
And so you eat the radish, slowly, contemplatively. You watch the city and listen to the music. You weren't hungry upon your arrival nor are you full now. You don't mind the room. Time passes, though you aren't sure how much.
Again the music stops, the waiter enters, the dome lifts. Again dark ceramic and burnt cedar, on top of which this time rests two shrimp and some cubes of tomato. You reach for the shrimp. It's also translucent and when you bite it gushes acid and flavour as if just pulled from ceviche. The tomato cubes are too small to eat individually. You scoop them up with help from both hands. They are crisp and juicy, tasting of shrimp and onion. You dry your hands on the napkin, fold them on your lap, where they wait neither anxious nor weary. Eventually the music fades.
Next come fiddlehead ferns, stacked high nearly the top of the dome. You eat them one at a time, as the room fills with a confident and triumphant violin solo. You hold in a smile.
A quiet cello welcomes in the meat course. It's a small medallion of venison perfectly aligned with a burnt cedar cylinder below it. Juices flow around your tongue and trickle down your throat from just the first bite. Your fingers are sticky with char, fat, salt, and blood.
Asparagus à la Jazz, barley with a side of Drake, the Symphony accompanying tomato soup...
You're thoroughly enjoying a classic mac-n-cheese when the music stops and the waiter brings a pen and paper to the table, along with a glass of something sparkling. On the pad, a sticky note reads “Take all the time you need.” A soft new-age piano melody floats through the air.
Once you've written your fill, you set the pen and paper aside and sigh contentedly. You gaze out the window. Nothing happens. You consider gathering your things, but you didn't bring any. You could get up, turn the door handle, and leave, but you don't feel any urgency to do so. Ten minutes pass. Twenty. Then, for the first time, a knock at the door. You make to answer it with a “come in” but your throat balks at the thought of speech after some unknown number of hours. Before you can respond, the door opens and a different waiter strides to your table, places a final plate in front of you and bows. On it, a mini silver dome this time, perfectly centered. The waiter leaves. You listen to the music. The sun starts to rise. When you're ready, you reach out and lift the dome. There on the pedestal lies a single blueberry, the sweetest you've ever tasted. And a note that reads with a flourish —
“Enjoy your day”
As walk outside, the sun is bright. You aren't tired and haven't a care in the world. The music swells.