The boy was giving the menu his full attention. The rattle of the train made the card sway in his hand, his other hand firmly held his money purse. He knew how much there was, knew it would be sufficient to pay for a generous breakfast. All the same, he had miscalculated badly on a previous journey, getting his sums wrong, and he did not wish to repeat the mistake. A gentleman must not embarrass himself.
The waiter in his spotless server’s whites smiled patiently. His job depended on patience and efficiency. He wished the boy would come to a decision, spending too much time on one traveller might cost him more time than the company allowed; still, the boy’s earnest and single-minded study moved him, he stood and waited, arms folded behind his back, his black face in the shadow above the window, nothing visible to the observer but the smile. Life had trained him well.
"I’ll have.....”. The boy had made up his mind. He would have ham and eggs, tea and toast and some marmalade. His voice was steady as he ordered, his eyes barely rising from the menu as he read.
“Yes sir, young master,” the waiter said.
PS: US readers, please forgive me for my culinary ignorance. I have no idea what kind of breakfast would have been served in a dining car in the US in 1946. And Tess Kincaid’s Prompt No. 185 didn’t say, naturally, this being a writing prompt and neither a history nor art prompt. For other interpretations please click on the link.