baskets of flowers
Student or Learner
Would you please correct the sixth and the last part of my short story?
The small alpine Italian town was in spring bloom when the two delegations arrived. The narrow, crooked streets were decorated with bunting, flags and basket of flowers. Their scents mixed with the aroma of the freshly brewed coffee wafting out of the numerous cafes and restaurants. Both Mr Topolovski and Mr Uzunov were in excellent mood upon their arrival. They met in a hotel with a view of a mountain peak shrouded in snow in mist. They hugged each other for a long time, and then they sat in a lobby and chatted away sipping cappuccinos. Later, they met Mr Turle and Mr Antonov to trash out the details of the peace agreement. The American and Russian presidents could not hide their admiration for the two leaders. They praised their great insight, love of peace, tolerance and forbearance. And when the two leaders started talking about coffee and showed their enormous erudition, Mr Tutle and Mr Antonov gazed at them in awe. Mr Antonov was especially pleased and believed that if Ivan Pavlov had been alive, he would have been proud him.
The next day the media around the world sent the pictures of the two grinning presidents in dark suits signing the agreement. They were flanked by the American and Russian presidents, who after the agreement was signed, heartily shook their hands. And then they all toasted to peace with double espressos.
As soon as the presidents returned to their countries, the rebuilding and reconstruction of each country started. But before any building material arrived, coffee machines had priority. With the help of American and Russian money and donations from other countries, each government bought hundreds of thousands of them. Every office, hospital, school, factory, police station, prison, court and other institutions were equipped with them. They became ubiquitous just like fire extinguishers. As the private persons had the right to buy these beautifully polished machines with a large discount, people used the opportunity to buy as many of possible. Thus, there were homes where every room had at least one. People were so obsessed with coffee making that they even equipped their private cars with compact coffee machines, which made their journeys more excited.
Drinking coffee had become a social norm. The more you drank it, the more you were appreciated. Even women preferred a big coffee drinker to a well-hung man. If you did not drink coffee, you would certainly never get a promotion and you would not make friends. If you went to an interview for a job, the first question was not about your qualifications, but whether you drank coffee or not. The old books with the word “tea” had been shredded and turned into pulp, and instead of them, new ones were printed with “coffee” replacing it. Coffee had become a new religion, which would be spread from nurseries, schools, universities to old people’s homes.
To tell the truth, neither of the two governments was able to eradicate completely tea drinking. People who continued to drink it were usually on the margins of society, like homeless, drug and tea addicts, alcoholics, good-for nothings, and mentally deranged. Ordinary people avoided them and looked at them with scorn. These tea lovers would meet in their private homes, where they could still enjoy their passion in a relative freedom, or in the small dingy cafes in poor suburbs – favourite holes of many outsiders. Sometimes, a one or two of them would go into the street with a cup of tea in his hand and shout at the passersby, “What happened to your tea drinking? Don’t you like tea anymore?” People would hurry up in embarrassment. They would not dare to look at him in the eyes and gave him a wide berth, as if not wanting to be reminded of their past.
The miracle of the two countries became prominent again during the opening of the first temple dedicated to coffee in each country. In the place were before stood the temple dedicated to tea, passersby had seen the construction of the two-storey square, modernist building, whose glass panes reflected the azure sky and bright sun like huge mirrors..
On the day of its inauguration, thousands of people queued for hours, waiting for the temple to be formally open. This was the most important occasion since the end of the war, and all eminent intellectuals, politicians, and celebrities were present and took turns in making speeches, praising the president for his wisdom and vision, and promising a bright future for all coffee lovers.
When finally the enormous white sheet was removed from the grey building, and the green neon sign lit above the entrance, a hum went through the crowd. “Starbucks, Starbucks, Starbucks...” rose from thousands of throats, like a prayer. The automatic glass door slid open with a soft hiss, and people went inside, awestruck and in trance. The building swallowed them like an alien ship, mysterious and sophisticated. It would transport them to a new world, sweet and thrilling, promising and fulfilling. They would be yearning to return to it many times.
baskets of flowers
There is nothing better than the aroma of freshly brewed coffee. Ah!
I don't know what's wrong with "baskets of flowers". Anyhow, try:
The scent of freshly picked flowers mingled with the aroma of freshly brewed coffee wafting out of numerous cafes and restaurants.
By the way, do you know where the word "cafe" came from?
Both Mr. Topolovski and Mr. Uzunov were in good spirits upon their arrival.
I have to disagree with Teechar about something. "Before any building materials arrived, coffee machines had priority" is exactly right. (AmE)
Paragraph three. Say:
And individuals had the right to buy these beautifully polished machines at great discounts.
The phrase "steep discounts" is also used.
Paragraph four. Say:
To tell the truth, neither of the two governments was able to eradicate tea drinking completely.
Last edited by Tarheel; 04-Apr-2016 at 01:33. Reason: Change second word (from "five" to "four")
Paragraph five. Say:
In the place WHERE before stood the temple dedicated to tea, passersby had seen the construction of the two-storey, square, modernist building....