The coffee shop was
more crowded than usual, for a Saturday. It seemed that it was busier
where-ever she went. People were coming and going from the apartment all
morning, and the roads seemed to have more cars on it than usual.
Usually, Amanda was
able to work on her book at the coffee shop. This time, it was difficult to
think with the crowded shop. What's more, Todd was going to meet her there. She
could not stay focused.
decided just to watch people. It was something she liked to do from time to
time. She wasn't sure why, but she enjoyed seeing people navigate through their
day-to-day problems. It kept her mind off her own problems.
There was a woman
who held onto her baby with one arm and kept her toddler daughter from straying
too far with the other. It was amazing to see how quickly this mother reacted,
as she quickly reached out and grabbed her child’s hand when the little girl tried
to run away.
The child was
focused on something on the floor next to one if the customers in line. She
tried a few times to go get it, but the mother kept grabbing her hand an
pulling her away.
Finally the mother
grabbed the toddler's hand and held firmly as she stated her order to the
cashier. The little girl, resigned to her fate, hung from her mother's hand
while making faces into the mirrored counter.
The customer behind
the little girl had her arm crossed, scowling at no one in particular. Amanda
recognized her from the previous week. She threw a fit at the counter when she
couldn't get a refund after drinking her entire coffee because it was "made
wrong". They had offer her a new drink but she refused and screamed that
she was never coming here again.
The man behind in a
business suit and laptop shoulder bag was donned in business attire. He seemed to be constantly talking to himself.
Amanda quickly realized that he might be using a Bluetooth headset in the other
ear. Sure enough, he lifted his right hand and revealed a smart phone. He
continued talking as he poked at his phone, oblivious to what was going on
At the table in
front of her, a woman sat down in front of her. She set down a salad in front
of her, sighed, put on only a small amount of dressing, and stirred it in.
Amanda noticed that
her clothes were a little loose on her. Most likely because she lost a lot of
“Good for you,”
Amanda thought, “You’re finally taking good care of yourself.”
The woman sat down
and looked wistfully at her fork, then she dug in, seemingly in a better mood
than when she sat down.
Just then, Amanda
spotted trouble. It all seemed to have happened at once. One of the employees
got herself snagged on the garbage bin. She balanced the large stack of trays
on the edge of garbage bin and tried to unhook herself.
At the same time,
the mother let go of the toddler's hand to grab a couple of dollar bills from
her purse that she set on the counter.
The toddler, sensing
an opportunity, immediate made a dash for whatever had her attention at the
feet of the businessman, right when the businessman was setting his rather
large and full bag on the same spot.
Amanda stood up
thinking “Oh, dear God, watch out!” but the words never made it out.
immediately snapped up and yanked the case away from the little girl.
swung the bag back and it hit the employee, knocking her down, onto her back,
the snag finally letting go. The trays that were precariously balanced began to
Seemingly out of
nowhere, a hand reaches out and steadies the tray. Another hand reaches and
pulls the girl up.
“Are you okay?”
Amanda, with a hand
over her mouth, still frozen in shock. The man emerges from behind the crowd,
and looks straight at her. Amanda, realizing who it was, drops her hand to her
side, and sighs in relief. It was Todd.