Kismet

Kismet is taking a stroll at Kinokuniya Orchard after an Ayam Penyet dinner (well cos you know, there are no parks to stroll in near Orchard Road [well there used to be one, in it’s place is a monstrosity of a mall], plus it was drizzling outside), browsing the comics section first, and then religion, and then literature, and then your Other Half says Hey maybe they will have that Pita book you want and though you’ve called the store a few times since that book was released in February (each time being told that no, we don’t carry that title ma’am), you walk the five steps to the information counter and ask.

I am looking for The Bread of Angels by Stephanie Saldana.

Typing, the guy says, I know we have just one copy… Let me check… I shelved it in just two days ago.

My heart beat fast. THIS IS IT!

The guy leaves his little Information Counter and I skip while he led me to my Pita book. He stands in front of the shelf (marked Religion), left hand on left hip, and right index finger scanning the titles. He pulls my tome out. I supressed a yip.

Thank you, I say, as calmly as I could. You made my day!

I hope he didn’t think me weird.

Meanwhile, my Other Half was at ‘W’. He had something in his hand, a book by Evelyn Waugh, a writer I am not familiar with. (That book was $160, can you believe it? I guess if you put a book in a box, you can mark up the price five times more than normal.)

He placed that book back on the shelf, did a double take, and removed a book from ‘Q’. He gently flipped the first few pages of the book – I can tell he was excited about something.

It was ‘The Illustrious House of Ramires’, by Eca de Queirós. Apparently only one translation has been made, and it’s almost impossible to get hold of a copy of a translated work. The book in his hand (the only one of it’s kind on the shelf) was printed in 1996, sixteen years ago, and the first print by that publisher (an obscure one, probably defunct) was in 1974.

The only thing left to do was to pay for our purchases.

Thank you, providence!

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