City Hum

The fluorescent light hummed away its merry monotone tune, but still the cafe remained a little sullen. The early winters evening had wrapped its cold colourless hands around the place with greedy revere. A deep fryer sizzled in the back, the cook’s shuffled feet another instrument added to the soundtrack. The kids were eating happily but making little noise, their cheery red cheeks slowly warming and returning to their original pale rose pigment. A few shadows passed by the tall cafe front windows, mostly black blurs of indistinguishable age or sex. The smell of salt and vinegar and hot fried potato was strong to the point of intoxication. The night rumbled on for miles around, the city was happy. And for the most part, so were its people. SH

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