By Vicki Reece
I live in a small town. The kind of town where during any given season − and any sort of weather for that matter − the whole downtown takes on the energy, the spirit, of all that surrounds it… from the big snowflakes that fall just outside paned windows dusting worn cobblestone streets, to tiny green buds that break through the earth declaring spring. Local families − and those from a distance − come here, I think, to get a feel of days gone by… of simpler, less complicated times.
The downtown spans two charming intersections. And this little spot has been my constant through changing times. When my children were just toddlers, this is where we popped in to smell tea-filled mason jars. To this day, when I zip in to get a chai tea I still stop to smell each tea, no matter how busy I am. When our home flooded and we found a place for my family to all be together − which included my husband, kids, three doggies, two cats, and one ten-year-old goldfish, it was the proprietor of this little coffee shop who offered to watch my goldfish, Lucky − along with his ten-gallon tank.
Once, early on, she told me the reason she and her girlfriend opened up their shops, a coffee shop and a popcorn & fudge shop, right next door to each other. It was so they could visit together throughout the day, two friends living out their dreams. And although their shops are indeed connected by a common wall with the perfect doorway for popping back and forth, it was never used. They were just too busy.
I was supposed to meet my post-college-pre-first-marriage roomie at this coffee spot last week. We reconnected a few months ago via Facebook and are so looking forward to sharing our stories from the past fifteen years. Unfortunately, my schedule got too crazy, and I had to cancel. But we’ll be here sooner than we know − talking, reminiscing, crying, filling in the spaces between divorces, challenges, tragedies, and triumphs. Right here. Real and in the moment.
Because… there is nothing like a neighborhood spot.
Photo Credit: Vicki Reece