I'll get back to the Portugal thing shortly, but I wanted to share this with you all first. You're welcome.
Last night Mr. Scoop and I were disturbed to discover that it was “Chuck E. Cheese Night” at our favorite tapas place. For some reason, a large extended family had decided to squish several tables together, in the bar, and celebrate one of the toddler’s birthdays. There was a perfectly serviceable dining area in the next room, but they had decided to invade the bar. As far as Mr. Scoop and I are concerned, that’s a killing offense.
To make matters even more entertaining, two of the toddlers, the birthday boy and his sister, had figured out that they could run on the straightaway from their table to the window, press their faces against it and scream at the top of their lungs for about five minutes before their mom, hobbled by an air cast on her right leg, could amble over to collect them. Due to this, all of the other bar patrons that were not part of the birthday party had cleared the room. Mr. Scoop and I were the only childless individuals in the room.
The window that was such a source of fascination to the toddlers was directly in back of Mr. Scoop’s chair. As he was rising to go outside for a cigarette, thanks to the smoking ban in town that made these parents feel comfortable to invade the bar with their screaming children in tow, the birthday boy careened down the straightaway. His head was down and he pumped his fists by his sides for balance and speed as he gathered steam for his approach. He didn’t see Mr. Scoop at all as he neatly bounced his face off of Mr. Scoop’s knee and fell back on his ass, blinking as he looked up to see what happened.
As I watched, the two of them locked eyes. I worried that the kid was going to start crying, but he seemed more surprised than upset.
"Santa Claus doesn’t exist", said Mr. Scoop to the boy as he pulled on his black leather trench coat. "Happy birthday." And with that, he swept outside.
The kid slowly got up and toddled back to his table. We didn’t see him again for the rest of the evening.