In the offices, they sat beside steaming mugs that slowly cooled and stared at computer screens, remembering e-mails, meetings, deadlines. One by one, the monitors flickered and went dark.
Outside, silent customers stood arrayed around a hot dog vendor, holding sausages, remembering chili, relish, and crisp warm bread. A man on a bench threw a handful of crumbs and remembered pigeons.
Black-clad men and women in red sat at tables, remembering wine, remembering romance. Waiters brought champagne in melting ice. They pocketed large tips.
Nobody went outside the city, where the soil piled haphazardly, and memories lay buried beyond recall.