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Thoughts From An Early Morning Starbucks Line

Standing in line at a grocery store or a restaurant, or waiting for the time to eat, we don’t need to waste our time. We don’t need to “wait” for one second. Instead, we can enjoy breathing in and out for our nourishment and healing. We can use that time to notice that we will soon be able to have food, and we can be happy and grateful during that time. Instead of waiting, we can generate joy.” — Thich Nhat Hanh

We’re all working to process something in our lives—big and small things alike. This morning I was processing the benefits and drawbacks to skipping sleep for an early morning flight. It’s not my first rodeo when it comes to such things, and nothing that happens today will shake my belief that starting your day before the world wakes up offers a necessary head start.

I contemplated this in the Starbucks line, chock full of groggy caffeine junkies looking for enlightenment, or maybe just a lifeline to the day. I didn’t need a lifeline, merely validation of a long-held habit of coffee equalling go. Standing in line, I recalled the gist of Thich Nhat Hanh’s quote, if not verbatim, and settled into a quiet celebration of life. The coffee surely stimulated the conversation between the ears later, but why wait? Life is now, caffeinated or not.

Some minor travel-related inconveniences like a slow moving line are no reason to grumble. It wasn’t long ago when we missed the close proximity of a crowd. Traveling again is a reason for joy, and so too is reviewing an early start to the day while awaiting the miracle of coffee.

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