Every summer, I worked the same volunteer job at a children’s summer camp. The hours are decent, just early, so everyday I always walk briskly over to the sweets shop to grab some much-needed caffeine during my lunch break.
The cafe next door was most likely much more ideal in terms of finding the caffeine I desired, but what they offered was mostly coffee, and the July sun was glaring harshly against the pavement and breathing down the necks of pedestrians. Beads of perspiration congregated under my uniform colors. I glanced up at the sky musing it’s so hot you could fry an egg on the sidewalk, which I had done once in a fit of childish humor.
I hurry under the awning, which was a swirl of mint chip and strawberry, and duck inside the cool embrace of the air conditioner. It was a quaint little place. Jars lined the walls and small barrels were gathered in the center of the room. Tiles hopped along the floor, leading up to a cream-colored counter. Sauntering along, I smile at the man behind the counter, whom I had seen the days before.
He reminded me at an old uncle. He appeared to be in his 40s or 50s and the tips of his dark hair have been slowly freezing over. The pink logo-ed polo went rather well with his tan skin. He smiled a friendly hello again as I ordered. What I requested varied from day-to-day, from weather to weather.
“Sure!” he exclaimed in a jolly manner, taking a look at the name badge I wore and adding my name to his elated exclamation. The shop was not busy, surprisingly, for it was a popular little spot and my drink came quickly. “I’ll take some off since you come here so often.” I thanked him with a gracious smile as I handed over a few dollars while explaining my job, the early hours, the thirst for caffeine.
“Well, I look forward to seeing you tomorrow.” he smiled. I waved and returned to the scorching heat.