Sad Day/Happy Day

July 4th, 2010- The roof of my Starbucks collapsed due to heavy rains. They ended up demolishing the store and have almost completed the rebuilding process 8 months later!

I’ll admit it, “My name is Donovan and I’m a Starbucks lover.” I worked for them for about 6 months during my post-graduate days and enjoyed every minute of it. Really. It wasn’t just the perks…free pound of coffee…drinks at a discount…insurance…but the people. The obnoxious people who are so exacting…”I want my shot pulled at 17 seconds and not 18 to 23 like the book says.” And she would watch closely. Or the one that would call his drink order wrong but believe it was right: “Venti, no foam, extra shot, mocha, half-caf, latte” Everyday…and ask, “got it right!” “No, but good try.” 

But most of all I loved what Starbucks CEO, Howard Schultz, calls the ‘third place.” Home is first. Work is second. Starbuck sought to become “third.” A place to relax and unwind and belong. Of the three stores I rotated between they each had a large group that clearly felt this was their “third place.” And I was a part of that. From the hello when they entered. Or when I’d call their drink before they ordered it, or just the questions about how things were done to make a drink correctly. There was a level of comfort that had to be achieved for the place to become “third.” It required me to get to know them in some way beyond the surface. It was a real challenge for some people. Others were ready to be known. 

So we wait for our Starbucks to open the doors. Soon I hope. But more than that we hope it can become our “third place” again. 

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