Starbucks Stories: The Smell of Nicotine


14 November 2016

The last occupants of this table have left a stub of cigarette on an ash tray, along with two empty cups of iced coffee and a paper bag with a half-eaten donut inside (Yes, I’m such a snoop I actually opened the paper bag to look). Normally, cigarette smoke gets me all weird and maarte, covering my nose as if I am some very important person too sensitive to smoke. But this time, I take it all in, remembering the lingering smell of nicotine in my father’s clothes. For a moment I wanted to try it to understand my father who has long passed on, taking the smell of nicotine with him. It has been four years since I last lived with that smell. I still miss it.

A perfect pair of jeans


Not pretty enough, I told myself as I put back a perfect pair of jeans. Seconds later, someone picked it up.

As the lady walked out of the store, I eyed her paper bag with much longing. Indeed, we don’t realize how much something is worth until we lose it.