Good Morning (April A~Z Challenge)



Good Morning! What a friendly phrase! Having worked as a waitress on the early – coffee-and-breakfast-serving – shift for more than twenty years, I’ve probably spoken it more than most.

“Good Morning,” I’d say, as I plunked down mugs of hot coffee in front of my regulars as soon as they came in the door. I knew the exceptions that wanted decaf or tea, instead. I knew who might order a little breakfast, after a couple cups of coffee. I knew who needed to get to work quickly, and who would sit for an hour or more. They were friends, sort of, though we only met over morning coffee, and mine was a position of servitude. They felt like family, all of us still groggy from sleep, making conversation in the early morning hours.

“Good Morning,” I’d say, as I put placemats, napkins and silverware around a table, and handed a menu to each person seated there.  I’d always keep an eye on the clock, as the ferry dock was just across the road and it’s schedule drove our business. I’d address the issue right away. Early, it would be, “You have plenty of time before the boat, and the kitchen is not too busy yet. I’ll take your order as soon as I can, so you’ll have time to relax before boarding.”

Later, my spiel would sound differently. “Good Morning! If you want breakfast, and are planning to catch that boat, you should give me your order right away. At this time, I’d suggest any eggs be scrambled; pancakes will slow the order down a lot, but the cinnamon french toast is fast and good.” There were always a few stragglers who came in at the very last minute, wanting whatever we could fix them quickly, and pack for take-out.

In our heydey at the Shamrock Bar and Restaurant (which no longer serves breakfast at all), in the height of the season, we’d serve fifty to one hundred breakfasts before the ferry left the dock. By that time, “Good Morning” had changed to “What a Morning” as we rushed to clean up after the breakfast rush, and prepare to serve lunch.

These days, my “Good Morning” is first directed at the dogs. It loses a little in interpretation. What they think it means is “Roll over, show me your belly, and I will give you one hundred belly rubs.” Actually, when I’m speaking to them, it kinda does.

About cindyricksgers

I am an artist. I live on an island in northern Lake Michigan, USA. I have two grown daughters, four strong, smart and handsome grandsons and one beautiful, intelligent and charming granddaughter. I live with two spoiled dogs. I love walking in the woods around my home, reading, writing and playing in my studio.

17 responses »

    • Well, new owners…they wanted to have a cleaning crew come in, mornings…they felt breakfast was not a big money maker…I had moved on, not happy with the managers they put in place, and it wasn’t easy to get someone else willing to get up that early every morning…so a combination of reasons. It was a good living for me, for a long time. Thanks for reading, and for your kind comments!

  1. Goood morning to you, Cindy! I can easily picture your smiling face as one to greet the regulars as well as drop-in visitors – and I can picture it making a positive start to their day. It’s the new-owner’s loss that they did not carry on that tradition, though the soul changes with a property the minute it changes owners. Your destiny obviously belonged elsewhere, and it was indeed time to move on.
    Very nice topic to start the day, though soon I’ll be saying ‘Good morning/buenOs dias’ to my friends downstairs and around the corner when I check to see how they’re doing…. hope your day goes well.

    • Oh, Lisa, you’re so kind! Yes, though I’d worked with 4 different owners, and 6 managers during the time I was there, it was time to move on. When I took a fit and quit the hardware a few years ago, the owner of the Shamrock called and kindly invited me back. I worked there again for about a year – while working my way back to me job at the hardware – but realized that waitressing is in fact one job you can become too old for! Especially for dinner and drinks, when the young and pretty girls are a big hit. It was all around a good experience, though! My best wishes that your friend is doing better today, and good thoughts going out to the whole family!

  2. I always imagined showing up at The Shamrock and introducing myself to you. I guess now I’ll go to the hardware store. I see in my mind’s eye such a pleasant face on you when you say, “Good Morning,” no matter where you’re working or what you’re doing.

  3. Pingback: ¡ Good Morning, Buenos Dias! | Zeebra Designs & Destinations

  4. Dear Cindy, Thanks to Lisa I am introduced to your lovely blog. Warm greetings from Jamaica! By the way, one of our three dogs ALWAYS interprets “Good morning” that way!

    • Oh, I’m glad my dogs aren’t the only ones that hear what they want to hear! Greeting to you, from Beaver Island, up in old, cold northern Michigan! Thanks for reading, and for your comments!

  5. A genuine good morning is such a lovely way to start the day. Recently I was in unfamiliar surroundings and needed a coffee. It was just before 8 am. I went into a cafe which was fairly empty except for about a half dozen customers who looked as though they were regulars. The young man at the counter greeted me and took my order for toast and coffee. He said that will be a dollar. I expressed surprise. He said ‘We don’t charge pensioners for coffee in the morning.” I smiled. At no time did I tell him I was a pensioner, but I loved that he simply included me with the other customers. He didn’t actually say Good Morning but he made my morning good!

    • Oh, what a lovely story! It does make such a difference, doesn’t it? After spending most of my adult life in customer service, I’ve often thought I could teach it. Sometimes it’s been more of a thought that I SHOULD teach it, as it seems like, too often, basic skills are lacking. The first thing I would teach is the importance of a friendly, heartfelt greeting to everyone that walks in the door. Thanks for reading, and for your comments!

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