On a bright fall day around 2 p.m., Ege Sushi only has two tables occupied in its modest dining room. One by me, huddled over a bowl of steaming udon, slurping comforting broth and fat noodles muddled with scallion and nori and the occasional wisp of egg. A young black woman and an older, Eastern European-looking man occupy the other table. They're speaking a language that sounds like a cross between Russian, German and Portuguese. Perhaps they're speaking Russian but she has a Spanish accent. I imagine they're spies, or doomed lovers, their affections thwarted by grand tribulations and vast distances.
The waitress appears at the table, answering requests with a short nod and an enthusiastic Hai! As I look around the room at the slightly shabby but comfortable brown décor sushi bar stretching down one side of the room, a lone beer tap standing over a keg refrigerator at the back of the room (pouring Sapporo), signs handwritten in Japanese I realize I could be almost anywhere in the world. The authenticity of the food and the Japanese staff suggest we could be in Anytown, Japan. But the international clientele and the place's almost transitory feel indicate that we could be in any city large enough to support small pockets of intercontinental authenticity.
In fact, we're in a strip mall in Marietta.
(Photos by Jennifer Zyman)
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