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The Joy of Service

Since last July I have been experimenting with coffee, which means I am drinking it. I have one a week. I am very aware of how my brain and body react to caffeine, but I am loving the ritual I have created.

Every Wednesday morning, I arrive at a café. The owners, Mike and Andy, are brothers. Every week they make me the exact brew I ask for, ‘almond milk mocha, extra chocolate, extra hot and 1 shot in my keep cup (even though I will be sitting here for roughly two hours) just like I do every Wednesday, to write.

Andy and Mike get such pleasure from being of complete service to their customers and their community.

It had been recommended to me to write in cafes a few years ago, but I found it too distracting. I am a people watcher, so not much writing was getting done.

But it is different here.

I never really understood the pull to ‘coffee culture’, but coming here weekly, I get it.

I get the joy of being smiled at every time I walk in, of feeling like I am a part of something. I love that they know what I want and never give me the feeling of being a burden (which is the feeling I got from the café down the road, which is why I come here and not there).

The mums that come in after-school drop-off with pre-school-age children are not a burden; the children are spoken to with genuine interest. The prams are not a problem; they all just get squashed in somehow.

No other customer treats the prams as a burden.

Meetings happen here, dreaming happens here, and great conversations about music happen here.

When men greet each other here, they hug deeply.

You can join in any conversation, you can be buried in work, or you can do both; it all works.

We can request music, and we are asked what music we want.

There is laughter and connection and lots of care here.

In a writing break the other week, I tried to cause a revolt. I asked the whole café, there were around 8 of us, if they were smooth or crunchy peanut butter fans. I had been served smooth (I cannot believe this still happens in this day and age). Crunchy won, of course.

The wandering man with a mental illness arrives every week, and another customer hand’s him the paper.

The paper belongs to the café, but this gentleman believes the paper is his, and it is always given to him when he walks in by the person currently reading the paper. Then he gets on his bike and goes off with his paper.

Everyone is welcome here. The culture is one of relaxed inclusiveness. It has been created by two brothers being exactly who they are, giving exactly what they have to give.

I wish you the joy of giving what you have to give, by being exactly who you are.

Is there a bigger joy than that?

Wishing you a weekend filled with knowing your value. xxx

The Joy of Service