I ate lunch then decided to visit my coffee shop— not the one where the barista hates S but the one with the very chipper young woman.
In the afternoons she is joined by a another young guy who doesn’t know me. When the bell rang as I entered the coffee shop she looked over his shoulder and we both waved excitedly at each other. He took my order, there was some confusion but we managed, and I even got up when “vanilla latte” was called. It wasn’t mine so she made a big X and we laughed. Teenage boy looked in on mild confusion.
When my drink was called, I had to laugh again and ask “me?”. I approached the counter and she said in practiced English “long time no see”. My heart swelled on the spot. I just smiled big and said 맞아요! Right!
When I returned my cup I said “see you next time” to which she said automatically “see you”. Some young women waiting nearby laughed kindly at the exchange.
Once I gathered my jacket to head out, she quickly burst through the little counter saloon doors to say “see you later!”
It was so sweet and the excitement I imagined we shared was not wrong!
I thought about who I’d be writing letters to when I leave and she was tentatively on the list. Well now she is cemented!