|I need this at 6 am on Saturday|
Early Saturday mornings at Starbucks seems to fit our demographic. I suspect the younger crowd populates the ubiquitous coffee chain in the evening hours, when I am shutting down at the end of a long day. After we have been there an hour, the foot traffic picks up. Looking around, I see individuals plugged into their requisite electronic devices taking the occasional sip while intently engaging whatever is on the screen, couples conversing over steaming latte’s, a few younger guys in another corner who may be gathered for the same reason we are. Starbucks is to this era what the classic diner was to an earlier generation.
On this particular morning, when we had been there long enough for the coffee to do its good work of energizing my synapses, I noticed a young father with his infant daughter, likely about a year old, close to the age of my youngest grand-daughter. She was dressed in “footy jammies”. You know the kind: all-in-one flannels that zip from the ankle to the neck and have the non-slip coating on the bottom of the feet. The contrast was striking between the tiny toddler with her wisp of light hair and her strongly built father with his shock of dark hair who carried her as lightly as he might carry a kitten. They sat down in one of the cushioned chairs by a window, about half-way across the dining area from us. Though still engaged in discussion with the guys, I couldn’t help watching this father-daughter moment.
|Every child should have these|
She was perched on his lap, nibbling on something from the bakery case. He was drinking his coffee. Every so often, he would bend down and kiss her on the top of the head or ruffle her crown of hair. As people came and went, she would point and say something. He would look and smile and comment. When, as inevitably happens with small children and food, a piece of her breakfast didn’t make it to her mouth, he would carefully help her recover it from her lap or his. Not so extraordinary, this. Yet, as I watched them, in their own little world though surrounded by people, I realized what a precious, magic time they were sharing. This daughter was learning at an early age that she had a father who loved her so much that nothing else but being together was important. He was supremely content just to simply be with her. No agenda, no schedule, just being with his little girl while she enjoyed her pastry and the people strolling in and out and the morning sun peaking in the window of that Starbucks cafe.
Then I thought about the date I had coming up later in the day with one of my own daughters. And I was grateful for this young man and his reminder.