What’s Brewing? Observations from the Coffee Shop

Why in the world would a 60-something chick who has waited through three careers and four children to have time on her hands decide to work in a coffee shop?

Because it smells SO GOOD……

No, really. There are plenty of reasons. And when I got up at 6 to be at work by 7 this week, I had to remind myself:

  • It’s a chance to get out of my “bubble” and be around people who don’t all think like I do.
  • Learning to run a digital cash register and make espresso drinks will exercise my brain. (Still learning the cash register and it will be awhile before I get promoted to “barista”.)
  • The 20-something girls who make up most of the staff are refreshingly kind, efficient, energetic and fun (though one of them did ask me if it feels strange to work surrounded by her generation. It doesn’t.)
  • Adding structure to my life actually makes me more productive. I tend to make the most of my free time when I know it might be limited.
  • I enjoy and respect the guys who own the business. They’re local and they’re good at what they do.
  • Eleanor Roosevelt said “Do one thing every day that scares you.” The days I don my coffee house T-shirt and step behind the counter are a pleasant kind of scary and they challenge me in ways that cause an adrenalin rush. (Or is that the caffeine I can freely consume?)
  • My current “career” is crunching numbers for our home-based business. Working in a coffee shop is a welcomed contrast.
  • People who frequent a coffee shop are really nice. They’re giving themselves a break and they usually feel pretty good about that. It’s nice to be part of that.
  • I like the Pandora station they play.
  • I have a son in college. My earnings might buy a book or two.
  • I’ll get a discount on my favorite locally roasted coffee beans and espresso drinks. Okay, that’s a pretty superficial reason, but it is a nice perk.
  • I plan to bring my laptop along and when my shift is over, I’ll be able to slide into my favorite booth and get some writing done.

What's Brewing- Blog badge. (2)Of course, everything in life is fodder for a blog post, and working at Great Lakes Chocolate and Coffee is no exception. Starting next week, on Monday mornings I’ll share “What’s Brewing? Observations from the Coffee Shop”. No gossip, no names, no nastiness. Just thoughts on human nature and the good stuff that’s shared over a cup of coffee.

So that will be a large vanilla caramel latte with soy and an extra shot of espresso, no whip? No problem.

(Awhile back I was inspired to write this¬†while sitting in another Great Lakes coffee shop: “Taking a Minute for Latte, Laughter and Life.”)


  1. LynnMarie

    I love the atmosphere of a coffee shop. That is one reason I opened one. Enjoy the new experience.

    • inkspots53@hotmail.com

      Thanks, Lynn! So do I. It’s my favorite place to write and people-watch.

  2. Tara

    Ingrid, you rock! I love that you are being brave and doing something new. I would love to come write at your coffee shop. Hmmm anything mint or on a hot summer day, anything refreshing like a Starbucks Very Berry Hibiscus Cooler.

    • inkspots53@hotmail.com

      It would be great to see you walk in the front door, Tara, but it’s a long way to go for a great cup of coffee! Lots of great summer coolers on the menu. And, if you can dream it up, we can probably make it!

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