It’s been nearly two months now since I left the hustle and bustle of the kitchen work life at Anchor Bar for the hustle and bustle of the dining room work life at Café Limoncello. I’ll admit I miss my dear friends and the kitchen atmosphere I left behind, but I love where I am. Don’t get me wrong, eventually I want to have a life where I’m not working a dead end job, but for now I’m happy.
I love that hum that fills the dining room when the tables are staring to fill up. That moment when everyone has what they need. I can’t help feeding off the energy in the room. When smiles are easily shared and people are happy to see those they are dining with. Maybe it’s wrong, but I also can’t help overhearing the stories the people in the dining room tell each other. Sometimes it’s stories about the antics of their children or pets, other times their stories are more sombre and of their past. But I can’t help being fascinated by them. Although I’d never make it obvious that I was listening. Voices travel, I can’t help hearing.
Sometimes when young mothers come with their infants and toddlers, I can’t help commenting on the cuteness of the babies. I’m silly and start making them smile, and I love it. I also can’t help that constant pull, I can’t help that the words “I want one” run through my mind a dozen times while I look at those cute faces.
Then I see those couples who come to eat but barely say a word to each other. While one sits there quietly eating their food, their face without a smile, and their eyes looking all sad. Their significant other focuses on their phone. Maybe it’s business related, maybe it’s not, but they’re so focused on it that they don’t notice the person they are with. It makes me sad. But it also reminds me that sometimes I can be more involved in what’s on my screen than the person I am with. Moment’s like those remind me to make conscious effort to be present with the ones I love, no matter if we’re out to eat or at home after a day at work.
It goes without saying, the people in the dining room always have something to teach me.