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Ca phe stall that keeps the world going

An old couple, a little square at the back of a busy, tourist street in the epicentre of Saigon and a strong coffee aroma. While they last the world seems to be at peace.
It was six years ago when I had my first, black, thick robusta with velvety milk and ice cubes here while saying hello to Vietnam for the first time in my life. Grey haired granny and her stooping partner were the companions of my mornings, next to the obligatory bowl of pho at the Pho Quynh resto. Three years from that time saw me again in the bustling city and the first place where I scampered followed by the heavy rain was this very square. I had to make sure they are still there. They did, both untouched by the passing time as well as the coffee they served. I set my foot there again during my short visit in the Ho Chi Minh City in the summer of 2016 and again, hardly a month ago, wondering it’s deserted streets during Tet, the Vietnamese New Year’s holiday. Each time I see those two, distinctive figures and hear the scraping steps of the old man I feel deep, comforting serenity within. I know instantly that I am ‘at home’, the world is good and all will be fine.

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