It was just another day at work – making coffee and serving smiles. I was assigned to register, being the first person the customer would chat with and taking their drink orders.
And then he walked in.
I knew all of our regular customers by name and their drink orders by heart, but I’d never seen this guy before. We made eye contact and I felt a weird sensation vibe through me. Not only was he attractive but there was something about him that made me feel like I’d known him forever.
“Hi,” I said.
“Hey,” he replied with a smile.
The rest of our interaction was kind of a blur. He ordered a freeze, paid with a card, had never been to our coffee shop before so I told him that I’d buy his next drink. I asked him what he was up to and he said he was headed to work.
I’m not the kind of person who gets nervous easily or fumbles around when a hot guy is talking to me, so it was definitely out of character for me to be as scatter-brained as I was during my exchange with him.
After he left, I turned to my coworker. “That’s my custie crush.” (It’s kind of a thing, I guess, in the barista world to have a “custie crush”. I hadn’t really had one up until the day I met this guy.)
“Oh yeah?” she laughed. “He was pretty cute.”
I waited and waited for him to come in again. Finally a couple weeks later, he did. But this time, he ordered two drinks – the freeze and also a blended chai.
Dang it. He has a girlfriend. He’s probably getting this for her, I thought to myself as I made it.
“Who’s the chai for? I know you don’t drink chai tea.”
“Oh it’s, uh, for a friend.”
“Oh okay,” I said with a nod and smile, and my heart was like “Yay! I was wrong!”
“Well here you go. Have a good day!” I said.
“Thank you, sweetie. You too,” he smiled and winked at me.
I didn’t see him for a few weeks after that. I was sad, to say the least, but then told myself that maybe he didn’t live in the area and the times he had come in were just because he was passing through. Oh well. My custie crush was someone of the past.
“If he ever does come in again, though,” I told myself trying to be hopeful, “I’m gonna give him my number.”
I’m a huge believer in men being the pursuers, but sometimes, they need a little encouragement, ya know?
One afternoon, a week or so after I had made that decision, my coworker and I were outside taking pictures for our social medias. I heard a car pull into our parking lot and its subwoofers were bumping. I turned to see who it was and lo and behold, he steps out of the car. I was giddy with excitement, and then suddenly nervous. I had promised myself that I would give him my number the next time he came in. This was my chance.
I rushed inside (funny story – we have special keys to get in the back door, but I didn’t have one with me, so I legit climbed through the window…) and was assigned for register on that shift (again). There was a sweet, elderly lady who was a regular giving me her order right before him. As I relayed her drink request to my coworker, I wrote my name and number on a stamp card in preparation to give to him. But I wrote my name very sloppily (my hands were shaking, okay?), so I threw the piece of paper away and grabbed another one. This time, I wrote my number wrong. The same cell number I’ve had for about 6 years. I threw that paper away too. Finally I wrote my name legibly and the correct phone number and looked up into his beautiful hazel eyes and kind smile.
“Hey,” he said.
“Hi… I haven’t seen you in a while.”
“Yeah,” he said, “I keep missing you whenever I stop in. Do you remember my drink?”
“24 ounce extra sweet white mocha freeze, no whip cream.”
“Good job,” he smiled, then handed me a full stamp card (so his drink was free) and started walking towards the drink pick-up station.
I had missed my chance. The stamp card with my name and number written on it was still in my hand. I was too nervous to call out after him though.
Dang it, Raquel, I thought to myself. You’re never like this. Just give the guy your dang number!
“Hey.” He had walked back to me.
“What’s up?” I asked.
“Wanna go out some time?”
“When?” I asked. “Tonight?”
He laughed. “Naw, I’m working, but – ”
I cut him off by pushing the neatly written note towards him.
He looked confused for a minute, then grinned as he read what was on it. “Nice,” he said with a nod. “I’ll text you.”
After what seemed like forever (but my coworkers assured me it was only about 20 minutes), I got my first text from him. We exchanged messages for a little while before he asked if I was free on Sunday. I said that I was, after church. He said that would be perfect and that he was excited to take his favorite barista out on a date.
“I’m sure you already know this, but you’re very beautiful:)” he said. “And also, I’m glad I got your phone number today. I’ve been trying to get a hold of you somehow. I’ve even called around to other coffee shops in the area to ask someone for your name and to give them my phone number for you, but I’ve had no luck. Until today. My dad always tells me that it only takes ten seconds of courage. Hey, are you free on Saturday? I got the day off and I don’t think I can wait till Sunday to see you…”
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