good morning

It’s 5:30am. It’s been about two hours since I woke up, not necessarily out of my own volition, but because my body just wouldn’t stay asleep. “I have a cold,” I tell my body in order to entice it to rest a little longer–perhaps til something like 7 am, but to no avail. While TV channels haven’t even started on their regular programming yet, one thing that is open at this time of day is a Starbucks that’s down the road from my home (as with many other homes…). I figure going there might be my best option of getting some homework done, so I gather up my materials and head to everybody’s favorite coffee place.

I like their leather seating. It’s a single seat, worn in and comfy. I see that there are four chairs facing each other, three of them occupied by older men, so I take the one that’s open. At first they look like they are just reading their respective sections of the New York Times, but then they start to discuss an issue. I must have looked like I was listening, so one of them turn to me and say, “Don’t you agree?” Usually, I’d get mortified and just squeak out a yes, but this time, I explain why I would agree to this gentleman’s comment. It’s not long after when they start incorporating me into their conversations, asking me  where I was from, what I do, etc. Somehow, none of this seem awkward to me. Instead, I become forward, answering their questions and asking questions back. This banter continues as each of us feign reading what’s in our hands.

The sky that once was dark is now clear, with a sprinkling of snowflakes falling to the ground. There’s a steady line of people, old and young, asking for their cup of syrup-infused, whip-topped caffeinated beverage. I glance at my watch and realize that several hours have past. I once again gather my materials and make my way to the car. So, I am not finished with the homework I was trying to finish.  But I suppose it’s okay. I got to practice how to be human.

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