My birthday is approaching. I’m not saying which one. That’s for me to know and you to Google. I will say this much: It’s a significant one.
As I mentioned in my recent post, Birthday’s Silver Lining, my birthday is causing me to ponder many things, such as the passage of time, the meaning of life, and … well, I’ve forgotten the third thing.
All this pondering is having an unexpectedly pleasant side effect: I’m finding extra joy in little things, like sunshine glittering on the lake, and the deep green color of the trees. I’m in a spectacularly good mood. Or maybe it’s just because I’m on vacation.
I’m staying in a trendy part of town, a neighborhood that I used to live in during my twenties. The area wasn’t always this trendy. Now it has cute little shops with names like Tru, and Roux, and Roam, and Hemp It Up. It also has a lot of gardens. Two days ago, after a rainstorm, I went out in search of some of my favorite things, like flowers with raindrops on them.
After taking pictures of flowers, I considered looking for more of my favorite things, like warm wooly mittens and bright copper kettles. But instead, since I hadn’t had my coffee yet, I headed to my favorite coffee shop, Glen Edith. It was only a few blocks away, right around the corner from the apartment I’d shared with three other roommates once upon a time.
As I walked past the old apartment, memories came flooding back: the music, the incense, the bell-bottoms, the vodka-spiked Kool-aid. (Just kidding, Mom.)
I kept walking, dressed in the long skirt, sneakers, and hipster sunglasses I’d donned that morning, and I suddenly felt young, energetic, and hip. Or maybe it was the thought of caffeine that was propelling me forward.
I also felt rich, since I’d miraculously discovered some unexpected cash in my wallet the night before. I’m not making this up. There’s a secret hiding place in the wallet, right behind my driver’s license. I was looking for my Social Security card (don’t ask why) when I felt something wrinkly. I pulled it out and, to my shock, it was several twenty-dollar bills.
The last time I could remember having that amount of cash on me was on my previous out-of-town trip, and since then I’d lost my wallet and had it returned to me, contents intact. Good people still exist!
I went a little crazy that morning with my new-found wealth, deciding to treat myself to not one, but two breakfasts, since, after all, I have a birthday coming up, and life is short.
Breakfast number one was at the aforementioned Glen Edith, where I ordered a delicious cappuccino. It came with a tiny surprise: a mini-doughnut hole.
And then, another surprise: a bright copper kettle on the counter!
After the Glen Edith, I moved on to Jines Restaurant, a neighborhood institution since 1971, and ordered my old favorite, creme brûlée oatmeal.
The creme brûlée oatmeal at Jines is decadent. Come to think of it, the word “decadent” has the word “decade” in it. Maybe “decadent” actually is a contraction, as in this example: “Did you turn 50 last decade?” “No, I decaden’t.”
Having two breakfasts at my two favorite shops in the neighborhood was a small thing that brought me joy. It was all part of my preconceived plan to pamper myself, since, in case you forgot, I have a rather significant birthday coming up.