It is uncomfortable to be in doors, but this cafe does not have its outdoor furniture deployed.  I am seated next to an open window near the entrance of the place.  Two old friends discuss at leisure the hypotheticals which form their futures.  Cigarettes, espresso, and hard boiled eggs compose their post-dinner snack.  

Outside, a man heading north on foot directs his cow with a switch.  A motorcyclist heading south leans slightly to the left; order.  

Inside a third friend arrives.  The lights dim, then flicker back to life brightly as the owner delivers an espresso to the latest of the three.  Coffee stirred so long with a miniature spoon; the man might be imagining mortar and pistil, turning diamonds from coal.  

The owner sits across from me and offers a cigarette as he lights one for himself.  “Yo, falemnderit,” I say.  He leans back with a chuckle, turning to discuss something with the others.  His gray suit conceals a gold watch at the wrist. His manner conceals the rest.  “Who is this man?” each of us asks about the other; I in silence and him is speech.

“Avni,” he says directing a pointer finger toward his chest.  Then he points to me.  

“Joshua,” I say.  

“Joshua, Joshua.”  He says nodding his head.  “Prey nga jeni?”  He asks causing me to cock my head to one side, eyebrows raised.  “Prey nga jeni?”  He repeats.  “Anglia, Itali, Zvicra, Gjermani…?”

“Amerikë,” I reply.  

“Amerikë,” he repeats back to me looking over to the others who concur a new understanding.  “Më shumë ujë?”  He asks, pointing at my empty water glass.

“Po, po, falemnderit,” I say.  

Twenty minutes later I stand to go.  As I depart I hand the man 150 lek, he promptly pulls the 50 coin from his palm to hand it back to me.  Raising my hands and shaking my head, I insist that he keep it.  Understanding, and laughing once more, “Viva Amerikë,” he says.  Pointing at me, he makes a circular motion with his hand and then points down to the seat I have recently stood from.  I am welcome back anytime.