As the clock strikes noon in an Oakway Center coffee shop, the store is remarkably dark considering the warm, sunny temperatures of Eugene, Ore. As the aroma of coffee fills the air and baristas call out orders left and right, very few people inhabit the shop. The ones in the coffee shop sit alone, typing away at their laptops. The baristas liven the room, with a kindness I have never seen in this chain of coffee shops before. Even without seeing their faces, one can recognize the cheer through their voices. They ask questions, give suggestions to those unsure of what to order and genuinely seem to care how the customers day is going.
Outside the shop two older women, who appear to be in their 60’s, sip on their iced coffee drinks while talking to each other. The women in a grey jacket dominates most of the conversation. With her purse next to her, she discusses an impending sell of real estate with her friend Susie. Susie is adorned in a floral red jacket, red earrings hanging down from her earlobes.
“I felt so free and so relieved that everything was going alright. Now i’ve got enough money to live on.”
The other woman, called Susie by her friend, makes a motion of chicken’s wings like in the dance young childen do- possibly to signify the newfound freedom the other woman feels.
As the women continue to talk, Susie’s friend mentions a man named Michael, who appears to be the woman’s ex lover. Michael is described as living with his girlfriend, and Susie’s friend tells of her disliking with how the real estate company has handled the situation.
“Where’s the christianity in that, this is between us two.”
After every sip of her coffee, Susie puts her hands back across her chest. Finally the talk of the real estate issue comes to an end, as Susie’s friend says, laughing “Whatever, I will have to deal with the burnt ashes.”
They go on to discuss a dinner party they will attend later, with Susie’s friend asking “What are we even supposed to bring? I know it’s at the Eugene hotel, but are we supposed to bring salad or what?”
Then the women walk off into the Eugene sun, gathering their belongings and exchanging hugs and kisses.
Susie’s friend ends the conversation with, “ugh, the hopeless days.”