The 365 Commitment

Gas Station Serenede

Not to long ago, I discovered a small mexican restaurant at a gas station off a highway near my home town. Early one morning, I decided to walk in there after buying gas and decided to order a breakfast burrito. I sat at one of the cheap tables and patiently waited for the short order cook to prepare the food. She had quite a bit to do, this was no ordinary breakfast burrito and everything was cooked fresh to order. Eggs, bacon, ham, potatoes, cheese, fresh vegetables. But the suprisingly good breakfast burrito is not the point of this blog.

It was the serenade. It was me, some half asleep homeless guy in the corner and the short order cook. She was obviously a mother as well, she had pictures of her kids up on the wall. After ringing up my order, she hit a button on her phone and some traditional mexican music started playing very loudly. I was a bit annoyed at first, but then she started singing along. The homeless guy woke up rather quickly and pretty soon she was singing as loudly as she could. With passion, enthusiam, energy and laughter. The homeless guy was clapping along as the short order cook carried out her serenade.

I could not help but to be lifted as well. I know enough spanish to know the song was about a love that was lost long ago, and dreamt of now that the singer had become old and with no hope of love again. She sang along, not ashamed whatsover with her audience of two. Well, four now because some would be patrons had stopped in and they did not even bother ordering. They just sat patiently and listened to the completion of the song. Before taking the next order, she dropped my burrito off and gave me a wink. The next order produced another song and then I realized that this was much more than a quick gas station short order cook.

The burrito was good, but I left that morning with my soul lifted up, a swelling in my breast and a jump to my step. I sang unknown words and hummed the tune for most the day. Now when I feel down, I go order myself a breakfast burrito and I do not care that it sometimes takes 30 minutes to get my food.


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