|Cropped from the painting by|
John Singer Sargent, 1884
provided as a prompt for Magpie Tales
The year was 1884 and she sat in the hotel's dining room alone, needing no companion to increase her comfort, her happiness, or her enjoyment of a meal.
An independent woman of independent means, she knew some evidence of decorum was required of a woman alone in public in 1884. Therefore, she had her maid bring her a note, which she proceeded to read elaborately.
"Oh dear, how unfortunate! My dinner companions are unable to join me," she lied to the waiter. "I will dine alone."
Refusing the waiter's suggestion that she dine in her room, with her maid in attendance, she insisted she would be much more comfortable in the dining room than in her bedroom.
The waiter bowed, listened to her dinner order, and went to the kitchen, where he told his friends about her.
Meanwhile, at her table, she smiled, suspecting what he was doing, and thinking that some day it wouldn't be at all unusual for a woman to dine alone.
© Kay L. Davies, August, 2012
Posted for Magpie Tales'
and for Open Link Monday with the online writers' group
Imaginary Garden with Real Toads