I’ve written about coffee, talked about coffee, enough for most of you to know that it is a true addition for me AND an absolutely mandatory morning ritual. Unfortunately, it’s third in line after the face and teeth things but it should be first. Anyone have a coffee maker in his or her bedroom? Kidding.
I don’t know what it is, maybe my impatience, but I don’t care for coffee at home. Or, just maybe, I like someone to prepare something for me one time during my day. Could be that.
I am not a coffee snob except to say that I don’t/won’t drink Starbucks. I must be the only person in my town, with the exception of anyone over the age of 70, that doesn’t go to our “see and be seen” Starbuck’s.
I’d rather support Quinn’s Coffee House, the local place in town (where all the over 70’s go). I’ve been going there for 20 years and it’s just my spot plus they have the world’s best cake donuts covered in fudge frosting (I try for not more than one a week).
Mudgin and Patrick will start fixing my coffee as I’m opening the front door. Mudgin chats me up for five minutes, but Patrick won’t even look me in the eyes as he takes my money or bags my donut. (And he hasn’t more than a few times in all these years. What’s with that? I’m not scary or anything.)
There are two problems with Quinn’s. Town is only two blocks away but on the opposite side of the tracks from where I need to be most mornings. Getting stuck by commuter trains can easily tack 10-15 minutes onto a 5 minute drive. AND they raised their price for a large cup of coffee to $3.45. I pay it but I think it’s a lot. Don’t you?
Since I’m often running just a smidgeon late (no, not me!), I go to 7-Eleven, which is in the opposite direction but on the right (correct) side of the tracks and closer to where I’m headed.
I love it in 7-Eleven for two reasons. The coffee is really good and they have 8 different types including some high-octane stuff that I’ve never tried (maybe for the truck drivers?). I always love options. And I love paying only $2 for a 24oz. cup!
But who really makes my morning, where I’ve been going mostly of late, are Cerim and Zena. Cerim and Zena have been working at the corner 7-Eleven for so many years I can’t even recall when they started.
They’re super friendly and every morning Cerim greets me the same way with a big smile on his face. “Good Morning, Gina. How are you, Gina?” He uses my name twice in not so many words, kind of funny to me and makes me smile. I ALWAYS reply, “Good morning, Cerim. I’m great! How’s your morning going so far?” “Not too busy.” he replies. ALWAYS!
On my way out the door, we do our thing in reverse. “Goodbye, Gina. See you tomorrow, Gina.” “See you tomorrow, Cerim. Have a great day!”
I’m feeling I need to change this up a little, don’t you think? Change the conversation Cerim and I have every morning? I must be boring him. But what should I say to Cerim? What can I ask him that wouldn’t be awkward?
Zena and Cerim have the same accent. I wonder where they’re from? I could ask him but that feels weird, too, because they’re from here now. Just like me. I’m not comfortable saying, “So what do you have going on today?” He’d just say, “Working.” Hmmmmmmmm…… I’ll have to think on it.
P.S. Never mind the fact that on several occasions (Okay. More than that, actually) I’m without cash and both places gladly float me a loan for the cup. They know me, and they’ll see me soon, and they know I’m good for it!