So as the title suggests this is about going to Starbucks, that though is more at the end of the story. This is also going to be about the year ending in 2016, how I found out something about myself, and how that impacts me today, as a writer.
Getting this story started. I have this HO train set that is the Harry Potter Hogwarts train. It is the engine, tender, and two passenger cars. Very cute. Well being in a storage unit for some time they got rusted and I wasn't quite sure that they could be fixed. I found a local train shop, took in the set, the guy looked at it, looked at me, and I had the impression if there was a 'train jail' I would have been sent there forth with. He said 'his guy' would look at it but he didn't hold out much hope. I asked what the train would be worth, he said $95.00 dollars. I made a mental note of that if the train cost more than that to get fixed might not be worth it.
I did go to Amazon
and look up the price for a new train. The cheapest I could find was s$400.00 which seemed to be a whole lot more than $95.00. Granted my train was used but wow. It was something I was keeping in mind when dealing with this train shop. Thought you should know where my head was.
-Back to the story-
I get a phone call from the repair guy and he says it will be $55.00. I was over the moon but before you ask, yes I did question was that merely parts? Parts and labor? What? He told me that would be everything, I of course said go ahead. I was not expecting this for Christmas, I had brought it in on or about the 15th of December.
On the 24th I get a call that the engine is ready for pick up. It being the holiday and all I thought it would be a bit much to go and get it, set it up, just too much. The message was in voice mail so I let it sit and go back on the 28th, yesterday to pick it up. This is where the story picks up in case you were wondering.
I doubt that I had mentioned this before but before deciding to try my hand, professional at writing, I worked for a small computer company. My job was mainly computer repair. It had gotten to the point that I was severely burned out. I didn't want to see computers, talk about computers, think about computers. You bring a computer in to be repaired? I wanted to blow up your car.
I knew that it was time for me to get out when I was getting angry for having work. I was snippy with co-workers, I was snippy with clients. I had been doing it for far too long and it was time to get out. So I did. The reason I mention all of this is if I fixed your computer and you had the sheer audacity to question if the computer had been repaired correctly or not? I punched you in the throat for even suggesting that. Not that I had a temper or anything, no not me.
-Back to the Story-
Going to the shop on the 28th there is a nice lady there, I say who I am, she goes and gets the train. It looks MAGNIFICENT I mean seriously it looks like a brand new train. I'm impressed. Looking down at it I do notice that the coal tender is disconnected from the engine. It wasn't that way when I dropped it off but no biggie, right? I though can't for the life of me figure out how they reconnect. The woman doesn't either. So, she says the guy who fixed it will be back next week did I want to pick it up then? I said "sure" A little disappointed but I hadn't wanted it for Christmas and I seriously didn't want it for New Years. She mentions at this point that they only take cash for repairs and did I have it with me? Luckily I did, which she then adds that I don't have to pay till I pick it up and it's fixed.
Driving home my phone goes off. Being a good driver I let it go to voice mail. Longer story there but let us leave it there shall we? When I get home I listen to the voice mail and it is a guy from the train shop, YELLING at ME. If I didn't want to pay for it why didn't I just tell them, the guy worked hard on the train. Etc. I'm doing my best to hold in my cool cause all I wanted was the train and I couldn't figure out who to put it back together. -Sigh-
I call the shop back, introducing myself, saying I was calling about the train, that I want to pay for it but I did not know how to put it back together.... The guy apologizes and tells me that when I get there, tomorrow, he will put it on the track to show me it is fixed, how great it looks. I am slightly mollified, he did apologize after all, and I'm ready to go tomorrow to get it.
I show up today, 12/29, to pick up the train. It still looks great, he puts it on the track and it won't stay on the track. Plus it hesitates as it goes around the track. He tells me that I should leave it there and the guy will look at it next week when he is back. I offer to pay then, the guy earlier seemed to be pretty bent on payment and well, having been in the service business with computers I didn't have an issue paying something in advance. He says no.
The sadly amusing thing? He at no time apologized or said anything about the inconvenience of the train not working, only that it was under warranty.
I leave and go next door to Starbucks.
I decide that I am going to have a Christmas blend drip coffee and a cranberry bliss bar...
I promise there is a point just stick with me.
-Back to the Story-
Christmas Blend. Note the date? 12/29. They are out of Christmas Blend. I then ask for my other type of coffee, the blonde roast. They are out of that too, so I get the Pike's coffee, not my fav, and a cranberry bliss bar. My Starbucks card is shy .30 so I pay for that out of pocket. It was really getting to be that type of a day. So, sitting outside, coffee and bar in hand I think about all that has gone on so far today. How not having the coffee I wanted had to be something Karma was trying to tell or teach me. Still not sure on the what yet.
I realized while sipping that I had been that guy in the train shop. I was angry. I was willing to yell at customers, to be rude, because I was tired of being in the computer fixing business. That switching careers, learning about writing was one of the best decisions I had made. Even giving up part time work for two different companies because I had been concerned about cash flow.
That I was actually happy not working and that was a big thing for me. I was raised with that Puritan Work Ethic. A MAN WORKS, and writing wasn't work, it was an extension of make believe. I had come a long way.
I also noticed that I was now a lot more aware of things around me with my writer's eye.
I still don't know what is going on with this, I left; A guy in a white minivan took jumper cables from inside the van, fed them around the door where the lock is, so they hang across the door panel, feed them through the hood of the car, attach them to the battery, close the hood and door and try to start the car. It clicks and grinds but doesn't start. Getting out of the car, leaving the cables in place, he takes a sandwich he had and heads into Starbucks. I only can assume there is a good battery in the van?
That little bit is going to make it into a story somewhere and a made up reason on what was going on. If I had my druthers I should have gone over and asked what was going on.
-Back again to Story-
So, here we are back to the end. I learned stuff, it is the end of 2016 and it is a good time to learn about yourself.
If you have any thoughts please tweet or email me. I am quite interested in your thoughts.
Happy New Year