It was early one Sunday afternoon and since it was our day off, which meant that Anima was also closed, I decided to take advantage of the huge back garden and the sunshine and took my four dogs (3 boxers and a tiny greek breed) and headed down to the bar which is just two blocks away. My four-legged companions and me were in a pretty good mood that day since they knew they would have a huge garden to explore and I would be enjoying my afternoon coffee watching them play.
I decided to enter through the garden-gate since we had cleaned the bar after last night's party and I didn't want the dogs scratching the well-polished wooden floors. When inside the garden, I was prepared for my dogs' usual playful charges (they chase one another around the garden, jump over bushes, even climb a few of the smaller trees) but, instead, they gathered in front of the back door leading to the inner bar. They seemed quite nervous sniffing the air and Fatima (my very protective female boxer) attempted to prevent me from opening the back door. I got a little tensed thinking that they smelled something I couldn't see but soon discarded it as being nothing but the noise from the busy road at the front of the bar. And yet, I let the dogs in with me, just to be on the safe side, completely indifferent towards the wooden floors and the agitated cleaning lady.
I was inside the bar now and, despite the dogs' reactions (they ran around sniffing every corner as well as the air) I could see nothing out of place. The bar was empty, clean and tidy, if one ignored the smell of cigarettes from the previous night. I opened all the windows to let some fresh air in and headed inside the stone-built bar to make me a cup of coffee. As I went inside the kitchen to get a mug, I noticed a number of glasses and other china piled up neatly on the table and I hurried to put them back on their shelves before my husband saw them since I assumed the cleaning lady had forgotten to do so.
I was now sitting in the garden under one of the Arabic tents (a favourite spot for the customers) and was wondering why my dogs, instead of having the time of their lives, were laying at my feet. A few minutes afterwards, my father called to inform me he was coming to join us so I ran back inside to make him a cup of coffee too. I closed the door behind me this time letting the dogs out and as I walked on to the inner bar, I thought I heard one of the toilets flushing as if someone was using it. At that, I felt cold sweat running down my face and my hands started trembling. I was certain I was alone in the bar and I wasn't willing to check that one out! Just to make things worse, the dogs were now right outside the door barking their hearts out and, loosing my courage, I fled out into the garden.
When dad arrived, he instantly asked me what was wrong. "You're as white as a sheet. Are you alright?"
Of course I wasn't willing to tell my "logical" father about the noise. I just told him I was tired and went back inside to make him coffee but making sure to keep speaking to him at the same time and, as you might have guessed, I lured him in.
The rest of the afternoon passed more joyfully with my dad playing around with my dogs and my husband, who had come to join us but my mind was still clinging to the previous events.
The next morning I received a call from the cook who had gone to Anima to fill the fridge with some shopping. She was really upset with the cleaning lady who hadn't even bothered to put the dishes and glasses onto the shelves Saturday night. She told me that it wasn't her responsibility to do that but that she would gladly do it only this once just because of me.