Posts Tagged ‘it could happen’



Join me during the month of April as I blog through the alphabet. My theme will be What’s In A Name. I will attempt to write up a short fictional character sketch beginning with a different letter of the alphabet each day. Remember that a place can also be a character.


Sammi took her venti Americano with a nod at the barista and sat at the table with her back to the wall so she would have a full view of all the characters that entered the coffee shop. She had laid out her laptop and her notebook while waiting for her coffee and now she took out her headphones and put them on. What no one would know was that they weren’t turned on to anything, or rather they were but the volume was turned all the way off on her laptop so she wasn’t hearing anything. That was intentional. Sammi wanted to not only see everyone but to hear as much as possible on this mission.

You see, Sammi was trying write a story but had no ideas. She wanted to write characters that were genuine and unforgettable but none were coming so this was a research trip. She took out her pen and began to doodle, ignoring her laptop. That was okay too because no one could see the screen because it faced the wall so she could pretend to be engrossed in her computer while not paying attention to it at all.

She sat and waited. No one interesting came in. There was a mom with a little boy, or maybe it was a little girl. Hard to tell at that age, which she guesstimated was about a year. The mother seemed to be waiting for someone but she was also very nervous, presumably about the baby who was crying intermittently. Probably the mom was worried about bothering the others. No one seemed to be paying attention except the man with the wire frame glasses who had taken his dress jacket off and put it on the back of his chair. It looked like he was on an extended break although it was too early for lunch. He was not just aware of the child with the woman. He was smiling at it and making silly faces; trying to make the child laugh.

Sammi was frustrated because nothing was going on. All she could hear was the older woman who was probably the manager asking the barista where Julie was. Apparently Julie was late for work, whoever she was. The barista mumbled something that sounded like “sick — late — anytime now” while looking nervous. He was trying to avoid saying anything further to the manager. Just then a delivery man came in and needed a signature and the manager started flirting with him. His name seemed to be Jamie and Jamie looked a little uncomfortable with the flirting. He was trying to get out of there as quickly as he could.

Why didn’t anything ever happen when she sat at coffee shops waiting for things to happen? Sammi was thinking of taking her coffee and going to another coffee shop, or maybe she would try riding the bus, if she could figure out how to do that. Buses were supposed to be full of interesting stories. Yup. That’s what she did. She packed up and took what was left of her Americano with her after finding the bus schedule and the nearest bus stop. She rushed out the door, not seeing the man that joined the woman and young child. There was tension between the man and woman but also affection and the baby lit up when she saw the man. The man picked her up and called her his sweet little girls and kissed the top of her head with its wispy light brown hair.

Sammi wasn’t long gone before the Manager began to raise her voice at the barista because he wouldn’t tell her anything else about Julie just as Julie rushed in, full of apologies. She said her babysitter was sick and she had trouble finding someone to watcher her little boy and it wouldn’t happen again. She apologized profusely. But Sammi wasn’t there to watch the subtle looks of understanding that Julie got from the mother with the little girl. The manager had been louder than necessary and the customers had heard and seemed to be on Julie’s side, if it came to picking sides, that is.

No, nothing interesting was happening at that coffee shop. Sammi was sure to find something interesting on the bus because she was so observant and so intuitive and patient. Just as Julie rode off on the bus, the man that had been making faces at the little girl jumped up to defend the young mother who was being belittled and bullied by the husband. Of course, the husband jumped to conclusions and accused his wife of having an affair with the man. He didn’t believe that they didn’t even know each other. They hadn’t even exchanged any pleasantries.

Now there was yelling and pushing and shoving and the manager was yelling at them to stop and the barista was saying he was going to call the police.

But Sammi was gone because nothing interesting was happening at the coffee shop.

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