Home, Habits, & Being the Novelty Encounter

About six years ago now I was a manager and barista for a local coffee shop. Since then, rarely has one day of my life been identical to the one that preceded it. I have traveled the world, played volleyball abroad, met multitudes of people, been challenged on many levels, and continue to seek new adventure.

I am currently spending time in California and returned to my hometown today. I sit here spending time as a patron in the very same coffee shop I once worked.

Much of it is the same, new faces behind the counter, but in essence the same.

As I sat down to write, I began to recognize familiar faces come through the front door. Greeted by baristas who knew their names and began preparing their orders before the requests were uttered from the customers mouth.

I can remember a few of them by their orders still. Tall French Roast. Quad Espresso Shot. Afternoon Peanut Butter Cookie guy. It is incredible to me that some of the same people have been coming here routinely, ordering their same drink at the same time.

As I sit here in this familiar place, I find comfort. Being surrounded by people who’s routines have remained the same. I find comfort in knowing I always have a place to return and slip back into the flow of familiarity here.

Today my presence allows me to jump into their daily routine as a novelty encounter, a familiar face from the past.

With very little predictability or long term forecasting in my life, I appreciate the creatures of habit who bring  level of familiarity to my daily routine today. I am reminded why I enjoy my life of variety.

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