Saturday, September 26, 2020

You Can't Take the Sky (Coffee) From Me

All week, I've been looking forward to this morning. Finally, now that we are beginning to settle into some semblance of a routine with the baby, I planned to haul myself out of bed and hit one of my favorite local coffee shops for some writing time. I called a couple days before to verify that yes, the lobby is open, and yes, it will open at 7 a.m. on Saturday. I couldn't wait. 

Unfortunately, I forgot just how long it takes to leave the house when a newborn is involved. When I had gotten breakfast, dressed, changed the baby's diaper twice, nursed her, and dressed her, forty-five minutes had slipped away. No matter, I told myself as I happily drove us down the road. It's not even 8 a.m. yet, and we'll have plenty of time to write. I could almost taste the light fruity notes of their in-house blend on my tongue. 

I pulled into the parking lot and noticed that the drive-thru had plenty of cars, but nobody was parked. Probably no one wants to camp out in the lobby with Covid, I thought. I hopped out of the minivan and carried the baby up to the front door...which was locked. I could see an employee sweeping the floor, but he made no move to unlock the door. Frustrated, I called the coffee shop, explaining my confusion. Oh, the lobby doesn't open until...let me see, it's Saturday...9 a.m. 

"They're not going to beat us," I told the baby as I packed her back in the minivan. I drove determinedly, looking for something, anything, with an open lobby. I saw a Panera and parked, leaving the door open so the baby could get air while I rushed in. 

"Excuse me?" I called to the first employee I saw. "Is your lobby open, for, like, sitting here and drinking?" 

"Of course," she replied, her voice sounding like she thought I was crazy. Proclaiming my thanks, I fetched the baby, accidentally ordered a huge coffee (the contact-free ordering system wasn't hugely clear to me), and found my table. 

I may not be in my favorite coffee shop, I'm wearing a mask, and I may have had to deal with a crying baby before she fell asleep on my chest, but I'm here: highly caffeinated and thanking God for the gift of the Panera lobby being open. 

I find myself serenading all the postpartum and Covid-19 inconveniences with the Firefly theme song: "You can't take the sky from me."

Or in this case, my precious coffee-writing time. 


  1. Girl, you're amazing for being back to that already! And love the little glimpse of your darling!

    1. Thanks! I have to confess, it was HARD to get myself out to the coffee shop, but a huge motivation was the fact that I have a midwife appointment this when my midwife asks if I've been to a coffee shop for some "alone time" yet (as she did at my last appointment) I'll actually be able to say "yes"! It was so nice to get out there, so hopefully I can start making this a regular-ish thing again.