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Hi, I am Tereza. The Sketching Project is me sketching everyday life around me, all over the globe.

Sketch 16: A Coffee Stand Where You Pay By Doing Something Nice

It opened in Brno last year, attracted attention and provoked controversy. A wealthy businessman decided to fund a stand to serve coffee for free. In turn, you need to think about something good you will do on that day, explain your intention to the waitress, and off you go with your delicious cappuccino.

For example, the stand has a basket of flowers, and you can take one and give it to a stranger. There are little cookies with a paper note suggesting a good deed should you struggle to think of something. Some argue that serving free coffee is unfair to nearby coffee sellers. But it seems to me that people don't take this lightly. They don't queue for free coffees, thinking how much money they will save. As I was 'buying' my coffee, promising I would say something nice to a stranger, two mums came. One was excited to announce that she plans to donate paper to her son's kindergarten because they never have enough of it.

The other picked a cookie that read that she is to donate blood plasma. She was excited to share that she had done that several times but had to stop because she got pregnant. And it left me thinking: maybe this is little coffee stand is not ideal, but every time it opens, it stands as a reminder of how good it feels to do something nice and expect nothing back. Some come to enjoy their coffee after a long contemplation of what good deed will they do. Some randomly come across it and get inspired. It makes people talk, drink coffee together and smile at each other, activities that make me love living in our cities more than anything else.

Location: Zelný Trh, Brno, Czechia

Daytime: 9:30 am

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