by Ann Lemons Pollack
Late weekday morning this December at The Old Coffee Pot restaurant in New Orleans’ French Quarter. My pal and I, another two-top, and five folks at a third table are the only customers. Five-top says grace, server, a sturdily-built African American woman, “Amen”s with them. They finish, pay check. Server brings back charge slip, says “Have a wonderful holiday and don’t forget the reason for the season.”
And then she plants her feet, squares her shoulders, throws back her head and lets loose with “Silent Night”, showing a contralto gospel voice that raises the hair on the back of our necks.
She hugs us as we leave.
Two days later, different servers, different atmosphere, even different coffee. Who knows?
**Follow Ann on her blog, St. Louis Eats and Drinks