NOSTALGIA

‘Are they close enough together?’

He looked at the room. It seemed crowded and cluttered, but apparently that’s how they used to do it.

‘Four round that small table?’ They would be banging elbows.

‘It’s how they wanted it,’ the maitre d’ shrugged.

The serving staff would have trouble manoeuvring in and out the small spaces.

‘And they’ve all been tested?’

‘All clear.’

It all looked so unhygienic, but that was what the couple had asked for – a wedding reception from 2019.

He shuddered, ‘And the hand gels, bleach, face masks, and wipes?’

‘Standing by. As soon as it’s over we’ll scrub the whole place down.’


restaurant
Copyright Dale Rogerson

Written for Friday Fictioneers hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields (more details HERE). The idea is to write a short story of 100 words based on the photo prompt (above).

To read stories of 100 words based on this week’s prompt, visit HERE.


My new novel, ‘State of War’ is now available to pre-order on Amazon in eBook format, paperback coming soon. Have a look at the trailer below:

99 responses to “NOSTALGIA”

  1. What a clever imaginative leap into the near future, Iain. I felt their cultivated distaste

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Honestly, we used to live such unclean lives.

      Like

  2. Some things will never be the same. We will all be compulsive hand washers, that’s for sure. Well written so, so true.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hygiene will have improved for everyone, so that’s a plus at least… Thank you

      Like

      1. Sound like the waitstaff has bottles of bleach hidden everywhere! I’ve always wondered about the salt and pepper shakers, and ketchup bottles. Can’t imagine how many cooties are on those. Well captured.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. A chilling vision of the future…..and manoeuvring a mask would be challenging. Let’s hope it’s not such a bleak reality.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Who knows? It’s tough to see how pubs and restaurants will return to normal, other than a vaccine being found.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Times have changed. I miss the carefree attitude of 2019. A great reminder of what was and what is to come.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Those glorious days, we didn’t realise how lucky we were!

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Ah, the face of the future. I think we can say goodbye to a lot of what we’ve known as normal.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Some things for sure – browsing in bookstores and flicking through the books will be one I will miss.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Interesting viewpoint, Iain, but I think people, especially the young, will forget very quickly

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I think so too, although I do wonder if younger generations will be disgusted by some of the habits we once shared, like kissing people when greeting them, or sharing the same bag of crisps..

      Liked by 2 people

  7. now that is chilling, lol

    Liked by 2 people

    1. We didn’t even realise how decadent we were being.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Dear Iain,

    Too close to the truth for comfort. Nicely done.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m hoping the scientists will save us from this sort of future. Thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. What a thought eh!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Younger generations may look back at our old habits and find them quite repulsive!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. A new way to hold a reception.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. People will have to get creative in the near future.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I agree, that is if they are not getting married alone with Zoom receptions.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. We’re all zoom experts now! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Yes, people will want to relive memories.
    We have the similar plot 🙂
    Great minds think alike!
    Take care.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. All too true, my friend.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I miss a good meal out already!

      Like

  13. Oh, clever! I do hope this isn’t an accurate prediction.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. I can’t imagine sitting elbow to elbow anymore. It’s quite a scary thought. But oh how I miss Sunday afternoons in the pub with the gang, having pints and sharing bags of King crisps. *sigh*

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It will come back again one day I’m sure, I’m just not sure when…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Zoom just isn’t the same 😬

        Liked by 1 person

  15. A very sad reality. Things are going to be so different after COVID-19

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Some things will change for sure.

      Like

  16. I’m afraid you’re right. This 2020 experience, that actually started in 2019, is going to change us. But you know, old habits are hard to break. I’m hoping things go back to normal sooner than we expect.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I have a felling a lot of things will return, but equally there will be a change in some – in the short term I imagine a lot of businesses will go bust 😦

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Sadly, I’m sure you’re right. What a heartbreak for the small business owners who have invested literally everything.

        Liked by 2 people

  17. P.S.–I just pre-ordered “State of War” for my Kindle. Looking forward to it 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Fantastic Linda! I’m halfway through the final proofread, and still excited about it, which is a good sign. Hope you will like it too, look forward to hearing what you think.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’ve loved the first two, the second more than the first, so I’m thinking this last one will be an out-of-the-ballpark hit 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  18. Ugh. How I hate what this situation has done to us. It will be more than strange returning to restaurants… I know I for one am not looking forward to working in one again!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hopefully they will be able to adapt, but it will certainly be different.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That it will. It can’t help but be different.

        Liked by 1 person

  19. This nightmare tainted my piece too, good stuff!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It’s hard for it not to taint anything at the moment.

      Like

    1. Let’s hope it is short-lived.

      Liked by 1 person

  20. I am convinced that all this cleaning and disinfecting will make people sicker as time goes on. A little dirt never hurt anyone.

    This post made me shake my head to see how we could end up in the future. Sadly, I fear human contact will suffer even more than it has with the invention of text messaging.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It will certainly take a while for everyone to trust another to come close to them!

      Like

  21. You’ve captured the squeamishness VERY well. This is a vision of the not-distant future.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Will we ever trust each other enough to get closer than 2 metres?

      Liked by 1 person

  22. it’ll be a new world once this pandemic is over.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Who knows, maybe even a better one in some ways.

      Liked by 1 person

  23. People used to laugh at me for having sanitizer with me at all times. Now, they’re injecting it. The germaphobes shall inherit the Earth.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Similarly everyone is running on their own or sitting reading books – welcome to my life as it has always been 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  24. Party like it’s Twenty Nineteen! Yuck, and all of those germs and viruses…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. How did we ever cope?!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I don’t know, ‘Scuse me while I rush off to wash my hands…

        Liked by 1 person

  25. The staff sure sounds like fun … 😉
    As for the ‘four to a table’ — if that’s gonna be passe in the new normal after the plague passes on, many of NYC’s ‘hole in the wall’ restaurants will have no space for one diner, let alone a bunch of some … 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yep, all those boutique restaurants are going to struggle to fit customers in and obey social distancing rules. That may well be the end for many of them.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. True. The one constant in life is that change will happen …

        Liked by 1 person

  26. The dirty swine. It’ll be many months if not years before we’re comfortable getting back to “close quarters” I bet.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. A whole generation might never be comfortable within 2 metres of another person.

      Liked by 1 person

  27. Very, very skilfully written, Iain. I’m enjoying your stories more and more!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Penny, always striving to improve!

      Like

  28. I suppose there are things that should have changed even before now. I, for one, am all for better hygiene for us all. A little more spacing at crowded restuarant tables would be nice as well. Really liked the dialogue and the feeling that they were looking down their noses at these primitive diners!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hopefully the days of squeezing between tight tables and having the waiter bump the back of your chair every time they pass have gone!

      Liked by 1 person

  29. Oh gods! I hope it doesn’t last so long we forget!

    Liked by 1 person

  30. I won’t miss being kissed by almost strangers – men don’t have to put up with it! But eating out as a thing of the past is very sad. Made me thing of all those people who have had to put weddings on hold. I know it’s the marriage not the wedding that’s important, but we all love/loved a party!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yep, no one has been left untouched by this pandemic. Thanks for reading 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  31. Oh I feel this now. Why do people stand so close to me. Where’s the spray?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. LOL, I know, I’ve started shouting ‘2 metres’ at anyone who looks like they might come too close!

      Like

      1. OMG me too! I have perfected my “move back” glare

        Liked by 1 person

  32. All that just for a wedding reception. Mama mia! Nice work, Iain.

    Liked by 1 person

  33. Wonderful job with dialogue. Sad to think it might come to that — I’m reminded of the movie “Silent Running” where the man’s crewmates thought it was disgusting that he ate food that was grown in real dirt! He insists on eating a real cantaloupe in front of them, and all they could say was, “Man, that stinks!”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well, I agree with them about the cantaloupe 😉

      Like

  34. A terrifying glimpse at a plausible future. Great story!

    Liked by 1 person

  35. Oh yes, there’s going to be a new normal

    Liked by 1 person

    1. For the near future anyway.

      Liked by 1 person

  36. Oh dear! Aren’t they asking for trouble?
    Nice piece of writing Iain!

    Liked by 1 person

  37. Ingenious take on the old normal and the new. Thought provoking and funny too.

    Liked by 1 person

  38. I wonder what will happen… but these days anything is possible I guess.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve given up trying to predict, just going with the flow.

      Like

  39. Looking into the future, this story (well written) paints a solemn future to come! OH NO! I hope this doesn’t come to pass. Very descriptive story. Nicely done!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Nan, good to see you 🙂

      Like

  40. It may never be the same.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Who knows? Perhaps eventually, but not in the near future.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That is what I am thinking. I am wondering how long it took them to recover after 1918.

        Liked by 1 person

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