The two small wafers sit in the center of the white plate. One rests on top of the other, looking as if they have either casually fallen there or been artfully placed to give that illusion. Their squares are small and golden. Wafer dust coats them. When I am finished I will wipe my fingers of it, sorry that it is not enough to lick off.
A sliver of caramel syrup reveals itself like a smile, a golden slice of sunlight encased by two thin wafers. The other stroopwafel releases a frozen drop of syrup, fat like a drop of honey hanging, waiting. The anticipation of that simple drop makes my mouth water. I am a wolf, salivating for caramel syrup.
First bite, my teeth sink through the wafers into filling. My fingers are covered by the dust I will have to waste. I take a sip of tea. The first time I had a stroopwafel was in Amsterdam. My friend and I were visiting one of her friends. We were on our own, making our way to the city center. After wandering around a market, buying some matching long stockings that I never saw again, we found a city grocery store. Perhaps we were looking for a lunch that didn’t cost the same as the cafes. I don’t remember. I don’t know how we first found the stroopwafels, stacks of eight in a plastic bag, each the size of saucers. Maybe she knew about them from years of travel in Europe over the summers. I always deferred to her on anything to do with Europe. Setting up the train tickets, making the changes from one train to another on the edge of a new country we would travel through. Where we should eat or what we should do. She always seemed to know what was best. I was happy to just be in Europe so I let her lead me through it. At least when it came to finding the most delicious food she was always right. We ate the first bag on the sidewalk, exclaiming over them as we reached greedily for another, unable to control our mouths from wanting just one more bite of that combination- wafer, syrup, wafer. We finished one bag and started on the one we’d bought for our host.
I save the honey drop stroopwafel for last, biting off the tear and then making my way to the wafer. That satisfying crunch into softness, the way a hint of caramel lays across my tongue, allowing me to roll it around like a good word, play with it and then when it fades, replace it with another bite. But I don’t want to; only a quarter remains and when it is gone there are no more. I take smaller bites. Just a sliver now; like the syrup smile. Now it is gone.