Bacon Inspires Me.

-4

Last week I needed a little breather.
So I took myself to a late breakfast at a local cafe in my town. It’s decorated by someone who has never seen an episode of HGTV with its golf wall paper and golf art. The room is usually a quarter full. And all of those dining are retired folks.

But I like it. I like the sounds and smells of any place where the locals go to eat something a little more hearty than a bowl of Wheaties and a cup of Dannon.

Being at this cafe makes me happy. Happy enough that I go by myself. And I never eat out by myself. Ever. But for breakfast…that’s different. I always take my notebook, a pen, and a book. And somehow, in the bacon-scented air, I find a little peace and inspiration.

I like this place because:
1. I never run into anyone I know. Never have to talk. I sit in the same weirdly placed table that gives me a bird’s eye view of everyone, but is mostly out of sight.
2. The smell of coffee
3. Having someone else cook your breakfast is a total indulgence
4. You can listen to conversations and blatantly eavesdrop.
5. Community regulars. Friends. Tradition. The Every Wednesday the crowd looks different from The Every Thursday crowd.
6. Strawberry jelly on cheap white bread toast
7. 75  and older crowd. No care for attire. Lots of Keds, sandles & socks, Alfred Dunnar togs, and hair that told Miss Clairol goodbye years ago.
8. People watching. The way the 30-Something Guy walked to his table and gave me the “Hey, you’re too young to be here” nod.  And I lifted my chin and said, “Right back at you.”
9. Listening to the different laughs in the room. It’s the best sound in the world.
10. Fall trees outside the window. Red and orange are my favorite.
11. The vibe of a room full of people with nowhere to be, no rush to leave, their cell phones not a thought, just enjoying the moment. This sort of energy usually makes my eyes a little misty. Or maybe it’s the bacon.
12. The couple beside me who got up and left at the same time without saying, “Are you done?” “Yes, I’m done.” Because maybe after 50 years together you know what your spouse’s happy plate looks like.

It was a very good day.

So where do you go–a place that always makes you happy?

For some additional happy, you can win a copy of There You’ll Find Me HERE.

 

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15 comments

15 Comments so far

  1. Richard Mabry October 30th, 2011 9:10 pm

    Jen,
    Sounds like you drove south across the Red River, stopped in Frisco, and had breakfast at The Depot. Sometimes Kay and I are among those “old people” you see there. Cholesterol abounds, but sometimes you just have to risk it and hope the Lipitor works.

  2. Jenny B. Jones October 30th, 2011 9:12 pm

    Doc, you’re not old enough to qualify as old. Not here.
    And loved the Lipitor line. : ) Hope you are on the mend.

  3. Jenny October 31st, 2011 6:54 am

    The library. Free books, hushed atmosphere, order…so much to love, so little time :)

  4. Ashley October 31st, 2011 8:32 am

    A bookstore or a library…or one of those old churches with the huge organ pipes on the walls…

  5. Dakota October 31st, 2011 9:45 am

    Places that make me happy: the beach, my grandma’s house and my front porch. :)

  6. Clare Kolenda October 31st, 2011 10:00 am

    I’m with Jenny and Ashley on this one. The library is my favorite place to sit and just be. I love the smell of old books, with their pages slightly curled. I like the constant tippity tapping of computer keys, and the giggles of kids playing nearby. I like casually (attempt to be casual at least. ;-) ) looking at what kind of books other people are reading. It’s like chicken soup for a book lovers soul. :)

  7. Katharine October 31st, 2011 10:25 am

    You had me at the title.

    My happy places are woodsy places — our local parks and arboretum. I rarely write there, but I feel better when I come back.

  8. Leah October 31st, 2011 10:25 am

    My favorite place is Walden Pond in Concord, MA. It is the most serene place I have ever been. The views are gorgeous. You can feel like a real outdoorsy person (even if your not) because you can walk around the whole pond in one hour or less (now that is my idea of a “hike”) I like to take my time though, and stop to sit on a rock or log here and there just to soak it all in (until I see a bug and then I get up and move). Everyone you meet there is happy, and the walking paths are so thin they force you to stop and greet people before you scooch on by. The literary history of the town also makes me imagine walking side by side with some of my favorite writers, like Louisa May Alcott who grew up in Concord. Any time I get to go to Walden Pond is a huge treat and a huge inspiration.

  9. Dawn October 31st, 2011 11:31 am

    Loved your post, Jen. Felt like I was right there. One of my favorite places is a little bagel place that is usually empty about the time I am there. I sit in a sun-filled corner with my bagel, my diet Coke and a book. Love it!

  10. bookwyrm15 October 31st, 2011 3:35 pm

    I’m with Jenny and Ashley and Clare. The library and the bookstore are my safe havens. Also my room, which is basically a library, except none of the books are availible for anyone else. I’m selfish that way. My books are “My Precious” *said in a freaky Gollum voice* :)

  11. Kim W October 31st, 2011 4:50 pm

    This is an easy one, and my whole family would be able to tell you my answer. In fact, they often send me to my “happy place” to get more happy. It’s just a little burrito place a couple miles from home, but they have diet Coke, happy employees (who know me well), and two walls with windows where the sun streams in. I always bring a book and stay awhile. I can’t sit still at home (too much demands my attention to laze around), and the sun provides a warm place to hang even in the middle of winter. Love it!

  12. Suzanne Schaffer October 31st, 2011 6:05 pm

    Missed you! I was starting to get worried because you hadn’t blogged or left interesting tidbits on FB. Glad you’re back and that you enjoyed breakfast with the old people.

  13. Erin McFarland October 31st, 2011 6:15 pm

    Bookwyrm your comments always make me chuckle :)
    And Jenny, just more proof that you are meant to write…I’m in love with your little diner just by your list. I can smell the coffee, see the regulars, and feel the small town.
    My to-go happy place is anywhere that provides a great hike.

  14. bookwyrm15 November 1st, 2011 3:35 pm

    Thank you, Erin. I think. I’m assuming that’s in a good way… ;)

  15. Rhonda November 1st, 2011 8:53 pm

    1. Anywhere with a book.
    2. On a lake with my husband, fishing.
    3. Having dinner (or any meal) with my son.
    4. Sitting on my couch with my dogs loving me.

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