The soft sunlight shines warmly through the windowpane, illuminating her tired, worn face. A frown tugs at the corners of her lips; the skin between her eyebrows furrows as her gaze narrows and fixates on the words in front of her. The world has stopped for her. The laughter and chatter echoing from the walls of the tiny coffee shop fall on deaf ears.
The waitress who brings her cup after cup of coffee is acknowledged with a faint grunt and a couple of dollar bills thrown sloppily onto the table. Their eyes do not meet. They have danced this dance before, their lives bumping clumsily together like windchimes that never find their melody.
Her restless fingers tap drumbeats on the tabletop while her pencil scratches short, frantic letters across the page. Sometimes, the scratching is as ambient as the sound of the steaming espresso machine. Once in a while, it stops altogether. In those moments, her eyes shift slowly toward the light coming in through the window and the startlingly blue sky, as her daydreams draw her to a place wholly separate from the little shop in which she sits.
She traces the rim of her cup with her index finger as a smile slowly creeps into the wrinkled corners of her eyes. Lifting it to her lips, she sips the bitter brew that gives her life. Her eager mouth drinks in the hot, strong coffee. Her heavy-lidded eyes drink in the stories of the world.
Her pencil scratches the paper. And it begins again.