Art & Photography by Courtney Krishnamurthy
Art & Photography by Courtney Krishnamurthy

Coffee, Windmills, and Ice Cream

I pondered on the list of questions that must be completed before my first class with Giada de Laurentis – an in-depth look at Coffee.

What are the primary flavors in Arabica beans?

A. tobacco, musky, with worms
B. a nice floral bouquet
C. toasted earth

Hmm, I have no idea. I guess I’ll learn a lot in this class. Well, I’ll fill in my best guesses and we’ll see how much I have to learn.

I show up for the first class, answers in hand. Class starts.

“Everyone pass your tests to the front of the class.” Tests? What the hell?


An F minus? Who even knew that was possible? I totally failed, and yes, this was going to count as part of the final grade.

“I suppose I will have to drop the class, so I don’t ruin my GPA.”
“Yes, that would be best. There’s no way you can recover from the F-. Even if you pass every other test with flying colors, you’re average will still be an F,” Giada advised.

I left class bummed. I was really psyched about this class, and now I have to drop it in the first day. Plus, I’ll have to pick up some crappy class, because all of the others will be full at this point. I guess I could just take a lighter load this semester and load up next semester.

I decided to walk around the fair grounds for a while, wallow in self-pity. Kicking the ground, damp from the latest rain. I walked along the small stream that wound itself in between the fairground halls, muddying my feet. Seeing a slew of picnic tables, I decided to sit at one that had a seat open.

Two large, black women are talking here. I decide I need to go to the bathroom, but the only way to get there is to stand up, step on the small piece bench that is next to the woman across from me. So, I do.

“Excuse me. Sorry.” There’s a little bit of mud next to her.
“Oh, I need to go to the bathroom too,” says the woman who was sitting beside of me.

I try to help her, holding out my hand. There’s not much room, and it’s slippery from the mud. But my offer is met with a glare.

Forget it. This day has been a total loss – nothing’s gone right. New class that has to be dropped. I have no friends. And now even trying to help is getting me in deeper and deeper. I just turn and leave. She makes it over to this side with more grace than I did.

I wander through another hall. There are brightly colored windmills as far as I can see on both sides. They are perfectly aligned; some are painted with stripes, others with polka dots.

As I wander deeper into the hall, it looks like the warehouse from Roger Rabbit. There are some brightly colored yellow sculptures on the floor – circular in shape.

Then I get to another food area. There are more picnic tables and an ice cream shop. Mmmm, I’m craving Butterfinger ice cream.

“I’m closing in two minutes,” the woman behind the counter says.

Panic sets in as I try to quickly scan the types of ice cream she has… I’m not seeing Butterfinger but I want it so bad.

Finally, “Can I get the vanilla back there with some Butterfinger pieces mixed in?”

“Sure,” she starts scooping. “That will be $4.50.”

I put my hand in my pocket… then my other pocket. Oh shit. No money.

“Oh my god, I’m sorry. I left my money in the car. I will run and get it. I’ll be back really quick, I promise.”

“Okay, but I’m closing.”

I sprint at breakneck speeds. Back through the warehouse, past the sculptures, through the windmills. Across the covered porch in front of the general store. I find my car and dig out the money.

Again, I sprint, knocking people out of the way. I need my Butterfinger ice cream. Back through the windmills. Back past the circular yellow sculptures.

I reach the ice cream stand. It’s closed up. There’s a box sitting in front of the window I ordered from… Maybe she left my ice cream in there?

“We’re Closed” the inside of the box lid reads. There are iced donuts inside – miniature. “Please enjoy a donut” it says below the closed message.

I feel like crying. The day has been a complete bust, and I’m craving Butterfinger ice cream, and I can’t even have that.

“Hello,” says a guy, as he starts to unlock the ice cream stand.

“Hi… Who are you?”

“I work here… I’m opening up.”

“Oh, I just ran to my car to get my money. The girl that was here closed up before I could pay for my ice cream.”

“Is this it?” He slides the cup of Butterfinger ice cream out from behind the window as he gets inside.

“Yes!” I pay him and take my ice cream. It’s sort of melty from where it’s been sitting. I wonder why they didn’t just put a sign up that said someone would be there to open in 5 minutes, or why that silly girl just didn’t tell me this guy would be here soon.

It doesn’t matter. Something has finally gone right in my day. I’m feeding my craving.

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