Thursday, March 19, 2009

Morning Coffee

It was a Tuesday, my regularly scheduled morning to meet for coffee with a friend. I arrived at the coffee shop a few minutes early, filing in line behind the other customers.

I settled into my spot, looking up at the menu, the one I've memorized. I don't know why I bother to read it; I always order the same thing.

The two of them were just ahead of me, reading the blackboard menu.

Her white hair, recently styled, softly waved against her porcelain skin, a complexion so striking next to the plum-colored sweater. With glasses and squinted eyes, she considered the menu. She drew her hand to her face in a thoughtful gesture. I saw the glimmer of a diamond band. She slipped her other hand through his arm.

He leaned in close to her face and they whispered.

He wore a plaid shirt, which I am certain was freshly pressed. Thin and tall, he stood. His face was weathered from years of working in the harsh sun. He gently patted the fair hand resting on his arm.

I wondered how many times they had stood at a counter through the years. A toddler tugging her mother's skirt, a lanky teen towering over his father's shoulders.

I thought of the many things they have ordered. Sandwiches and soups for a lunch, counting coins during hard times. A scoop of ice cream on a scorching summer day. A special dinner on an anniversary.

I considered that they must know each other's likes and dislikes. She knows how he takes his tea. He knows how she likes her coffee.

The couple finally decided and a lady across the counter filled their drink order. They wrapped worn hands around Styrofoam cups, turned, and walked away.

As I watched them leave, I smiled to myself, looking forward to the many days with my own sweet husband. I hope for moments of just standing in line together, ignoring the world around us and looking to each other.

We'll stand at a counter and read a menu. I'll slip my hand through his arm and wait. He'll order my coffee and I'll fix his tea.

Irish Breakfast with sugar. Lots of sugar.


Roxanne said...

There is no doubt that marriage, struggled through--loved through--done well is one of the sweetest gifts from God.

pcb said...

Love this. Don't you savor moments when you get a glimpse into someone's life like this?

TexasRed said...

How fantastic! That's what I want people to say about us some day.

Susanne said...

Sweet, sweet post!

2nd Cup of Coffee said...

Believe it or not, when my marriage was weak, it was moments like this (hoping for moments like this) that kept me hanging in there.

pticester said...

How beautiful.