I always drink a café latte on Wednesday mornings. I have it at 6:30 a.m. while sitting outside of a coffee shop that faces a twisty, narrow historic downtown area of southeast Arizona. The mountains cradle the town and the storefronts are all of different color doors.
Here, the mornings are cool even in the summer. The latte always frothy. I like a good frothy latte, and I like it when the barista takes that extra moment to make the frothiness look like something that took talent and time.
That’s the best part of the latte, seeing it when it was just handed to me and seeing that someone took an extra moment to froth it up. Extra moments. We need more of those.
Like when you get to the office at 8:00 a.m. and you walk in as if you are in some sort of mission to save the world. You pass by people sharing quick “hellos” and “good mornings” but you don’t really stop for an extra moment to see who you are greeting or to hear a greeting in return.
When I think about it, I do this regularly. Am I one of those people? Am I too important to take the time? Too busy to stop and listen? Do my greetings mean anything?
At one of the gas stations in town that is connected to a Subway and a convenience store, the checkout guy always has something to say. He doesn’t know me outside of the station, but he takes the time to ask about my day, to comment on what I’m purchasing, to tell a joke.
He knows me but I don’t know him. He cares. He takes extra moments. I need to be more like him.
When I visit the town down the road, about 50 miles down the road, I often stop by the cinema in the mall for popcorn. There isn’t a movie theater in my town and I’m a sucker for the smell and taste of buttery movie theater popcorn. I could eat it any time of the day and the stale popcorn the day after is just as good.
Each time I go, the checkout girl knows I’m there just for the popcorn. She remembers. She knows I want popcorn. She has it ready. She takes an extra moment to let me know that what I want is important to me.
Grandparents are good at giving extra moments. They know the value of them. They give hugs…