Happy New Year, Friends!
It’s been a while, but I figured it was time to stick to these posts. You know how it goes… Life, holidays, etc. Anyways, hope you’re holidays were awesome. If you’re in my readers’ group, you know you’re on my list to receive some surprise candy in the mail at some point. Many surprises have already been sent out and in the coming weeks, there will be more.
As for my latest coffee adventure, it all began at my favorite Starbucks on a windy Thursday afternoon…
We headed to Starbucks for a celebratory round of drinks. I’d just found out that Passionate Ink authors had voted me into taking over the role of VP of Communications and Marketing for Chapter #207 of the #RWA. **SCREAMS WITH JOY** So, we walked in around 2 p.m. and the place was packed. Our usual table was being used by someone else, but we found a spot along the wall on the padded bench where the other tables were. I immediately realized those are quite comfy and we’ve since switched our ‘usual table’.
There were people lined up at the bar, the cash register and anywhere they could find somewhere to stand. Heck, even the drive-thru was wrapped around the building to the point that the fitness buffs couldn’t get to their beloved lifting until the parking lot cleared out some.
As we sat there, the baristas worked their butts off to serve everyone who was waiting and being a more-than-regular customer has its perks. When they’d seen us walking through the parking lot, our girls had already began making ours. So, it was just a matter of scanning my little app and grabbing our drinks. In other words, we were seated at the bench and had a bird’s eye view over everything in the place while we sipped our favorite beverages. Usually, I’m prepared with a bowl or a bag of microwave popcorn when drama hits the world of Facebook, but seeing as how Starbucks is fairly calm… Why would I need popcorn there, right? Boy–oh, boy, was I wrong.
After we’d been there for about fifteen minutes, an older gentleman that’s always there came in and he sat with another older gentleman whom he knows from church. They had their tall coffees with cream and they sat discussing an upcoming sermon and mentioned a few tidbits to each other about a few people they know. Harmless. Quiet. Peaceful coffee time. And then, it happened…
We were sitting ducks. We were prey that a hungry cat was about to have fun with. The thing was…we never saw it coming. In walked a group of people we’ve seen before with other kids, moms and a girl. Normally, she’s very well-behaved and their group is always a quiet (mostly) and respectful group. We all exchanged ‘Hellos’ and turned back to our own conversation as the group made their way to the counter to order. The first three in the group ordered and went on about their business. They sat down on the same bench seat as us, facing the bars and baristas as they waited for their orders to be finished.
And then… The nine year old girl decided she HATED everyone and everything in the whole entire world and wanted EVERYONE in the county to know it. In other words, she let ‘er rip…right there. Refusing to order or remain calm, she flung herself against the counter, knocking the gift cards to the floor before grabbing a bag of chips and trying to rip it open with her snarling mouth. When she heard that one of the orders for her group was ready, she suddenly stopped what she was doing and watched with an intense and eerie calm as one of the parents delivered the tall, vanilla bean frappuccino to one of the teenage boys. Just as I was about to take a drink of my mocha, the girl lunges at the boy’s table, grabs his frappucino and launched it. (Think Punkin’ Chuckin’ style). White, creamy and frozen goodness exploded in a shower of classic syrup blended to perfection while a coating of sugar and ice rained upon the older gentlemen beside us, our bench seat, my cheek, the boy who the drink belonged to and floor. Let me assure you… Just because a ‘tall’ is a ‘small’… Believe me when I say, that puppy went everywhere!
Too shocked to do anything and in disbelief to the point that we almost started laughing. (Because W- T-double-hockey-sticks! We’re in a Starbucks! This doesn’t happen there, right?)
Oh… and it went on. We hopped up to grab some napkins and began cleaning up the mess as the little girl screamed for everyone to “Go away forever!” and that she was “Cold! Hungry! Help! They’re starving me!” as we went through a container of napkins trying to get it cleaned up so the baristas could finish the orders for these people (so they’d leave sooner). I’m a mom. I’m not afraid to clean up a mess and besides, it couldn’t get any worse, right?
Most of the mess was gone. Crisis averted. Ohhhh no, Ms. Merry Maid.
Aside from the screaming at the top of her lungs, she decided to grab one of the chairs and heave it like she was in a WWE Tables, Ladders & Chairs match! Okay…so there wasn’t a ladder anywhere in plain sight… THANK GOODNESS… Because after she hurled the chair across the room, breaking a chunk of it and huffing and puffing like Triple H, she lunged for the table where the other kids’ drinks were.
Oh yeah… she was fully prepared to cause as much havoc as she could like she was going for that briefcase of money and no one was stopping her. Luckily, the kids held onto the table, but that only angered the child and she lunged at the ordering counter AGAIN and attempted to grab the barista, demanding she be allowed to order something. Our poor barista… and I mean this in a nice way because we LOVE each of them… but… Bless Her Heart. She was terrified. This nine year old raging child was truly coming for her and our barista looked like a deer in the headlights.
**We laugh now, but in the moment, the entire place went quiet except for that kid. Not even kidding.**
Our barista, **J**, stood there in shock while said child flopped and flailed all over the counter before flinging herself to the floor… FACE DOWN on the floor (THE FLOOR…My inner germaphobe was fighting the urge to pick her up myself and hand her some sanitizer to clean her face!). There, she proceeded to flop and flail, fuss and cuss up a storm as we all watched. The poor woman taking care of her tried to pick her up and the child screamed “You’re hurting me! Stop touching me!” The poor woman was exhausted and who could blame her?
Don’t get me wrong… as a mom, this would NOT have been allowed to continue had it been my child. From the first moment of attitude, we’d have left the establishment. But, luckily, I never had to deal with a scene like that one. However, the women and kids that were in this group had no choice but to watch it unfurl or hope it went back out to sea like the Coffee-Raging-Hurricane it was.
After ten more minutes of people stepping over the face-down and flailing child so they could either get to the restroom or order something to drink, the girl stood up and adjusted her coat, patted her hair as if NOTHING had even happened. She politely asked if she could order something and the woman allowed her to do so as **J** stood there in disbelief, confusion and apprehension at even getting close to the cash register again, on guard for fear the child would again become enraged. But, she didn’t.
We weren’t able to hear what she’d ordered, but I swear…I PRAYED they didn’t allow her to order a hot beverage. If that had happened… Holy Hell.
Luckily, she also ordered a frappucino of some kind (to be honest, I couldn’t see what kind because they grabbed the drink and exited the building in a blur without looking back).
There we all sat or stood because the baristas, of course, weren’t sitting. Those of us left standing in the aftermath looked at each other, each waiting to see if the other would smile, laugh or go off. Eyes shifted back and forth, from face to face and no one said a word. As the baristas took a deep breath and exhaled, the rest of us erupted into a fit of laughter. Because… Yes, that had actually happened. No… We didn’t imagine it. And… OMG.
Thirty minutes of pure insanity had unfurled in our quiet refueling place and three minutes… Yes, 3 minutes… after they’d left, a police officer showed up to grab his daily order. Again, we were all left with nothing to do except stare at each other over the irony of it all.
Aside from my happy celebration being a bit… “Frapped Up”… There’s something comforting in knowing everyone at our Starbucks. Sure, it’s not a local diner, but we don’t have those any longer. There’s a community feel to our favorite coffee shop and who knew there’d be extra excitement tossed in for free? I used to go there just for my coffee, to work, to chat with friends. Now, I go there with a poncho in my pocket and a bag of microwave popcorn in my purse… ready for popping for next time.
And there will be a next time. Wait until you hear about the Love Triangle from last week. They all came into Starbucks at the exact same time. I’ll save that one for the next entry <3
Peace, Love & Coffee <3