The late night oasis announces its presence with a silver thread of chatter as the door jangles open and heavily jangles closed again. The server with their ready smile instinctively places a napkin on the counter, tops it with a frosted glass of iced water, and casually awaits the request for coffee - reaching for the jug on the hotplate before the request is complete.


A few of the stools at the counter are taken but none of the tables. Customer eyes flick from face to face then back to their coffee cup and the atmosphere is one of cosy intimacy afforded by anonymity.


After a few minutes a couple will stand, place a few coins or a single note on the counter and leave, the door announcing their departure with its customary jangle. The server removes their empty cups, wipes the bench, and deposits the money in the till almost in a single fluid movement. A hearbeat's silence then the familiar jangle of the door as the next Nighthawk arrives.  


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Katherine Horejsi
Aug 1 2020

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