The yellowed floors were in need of a proper cleaning, and the doormat was stained in multiple places from weather and years of abuse. Each red lined, straight backed chair leaned slightly and the wooden tables had cuts and Knicks. But despite this ragtag appearance, the small walk in restaurant was still busy. The Chinese artwork and exotic fish in the tank spoke to the culture of the wizened man and wife behind the counter.
Their accents thick and rhythmic, the man took each order bobbing his head up and down as he scratched out the orders onto small white strips of paper. Calling each new customers want over his shoulder to his wife. Shuffling into the kitchen when the line disappeared, the pair cooked, fried, and steamed meals for the waiting crowd. Every brown paper bag delivered with a smile.
A woman stood holding the wide zodiac menu up to her face. Eyes pouring over the list until she found a mouthwatering item. She stepped up to the counter and placed the menu back on top of the stack, ready to give her order. It wasn't long before the short Asian man stepped out from the kitchen. She was ready to give her order and began opening her mouth to do so when she was interrupted.
"How much for the soda?", the tank top to her left hollered.
The clerks face wrinkled at the young man, noticeably pausing as he shifted focus from the woman. "Dollah, twen'y fi'", he began slowly back towards her.
"Ok, I'll take one"
Eyebrows raised, the soft exasperated sigh didn't reach the ride man's ear, but it did bring some comfort to the steaming woman's mind. "Whic' sodah?"
"Sodah, pick wan!"
Stepping over to the glass door refrigerator, he pulled out the drink and waited for the customer to dig into his wallet. The man placed a dollar out of a wad twenties and ones on the counter, then started fishing into his pockets. After a minute of this, the old man waved his hand at the man and placed the coke down. After a moment's confusion the young upstart got the hint and took the can and left. Shaking his head apologetically, the restaurant owner smiled and took the woman's order.