I first heard of Sue’s Coffee House in St. Clair, MI from my sister-in-law, who lives in the area; she found it a quaint cafe. So, when I lived in California, I googled the establishment to discover the place myself, before relocating. Over time, I imagined climbing into a corner wrapped in its coziness, hoping it has a little of the Starbucks or Coffee Bean ambiance I have grown to enjoy from a coffee house. I dreamt about meeting locals and befriending staff, while completing writings I have started. So it is to no surprise that I find myself here after dropping my niece off at preschool.
In blustery forty-three degree weather, I drift down the road to Sue’s. My hand on the door pull, I enter the back of the house inhaling the smell of breakfast. I make my way toward the lighted front gazing at prints that adorn the hall and hang on red, green and yellow walls in the front. Soft pendants beam from the ceiling as crooner music lulls me back in time, while people meet, read, plan, and wait.
I order a Sencha Green Tea to take off the chill. Minutes later, sunrise sunbeams cast through the front of the cafe and dance on the blue waters just beyond the porch, where the international line between The United States and Canada exist. I can see across the river to houses on the embankment, sometimes, catching a glimpse of a freighter moving between the two countries. A seasoned employee brings a mug, tea pot, and a timer and sets it on the wooden table in front of me and says, ”When this (the timer) is done, then this (the brewing tea pot) is done.” I give my thanks and return to my writing as the employee disappears beyond the counter. Pouring my first cup, I tip the mug sipping the hot tea. The bitter first impression and hint of sweet after taste brings my taste buds alive and body alert, I look to my laptop to write a little before pouring another cup. Silently I listen to conversations as the song “I’ll Be Seeing You,” plays on the radio and my time here comes to a close today. In just a few moments, I’ll drift to the doors and find myself out in the winter-mix falling from the sky blurring the boundaries of America.