the ancient mariner
What a difference a smile or an acknowledgement make.
For a few years I stopped at the same "little" deli every morning on my way to work. At 6-6:30 I was often the only customer. I ordered the smae thing every morning–one egg with ham on a buttered roll and coffee light, no-sugar, to go. The lady at the counter, the owner’s wife, never acknowledged me, but asked me every morning what I wanted. Never said "the same as usual?" or anything. No wonder it was a "little" deli.
But then on the other hand I had been spoiled. The first day I worked in NYCity (special duty for a little over a year)I stopped in a lunchenette close to Penn Station. The joint was jumpin’. People coming in, grabbing stuff and heading for their offices. When my turn arrived I said "Bran Muffin and coffee light no sugar". The young man behind the counter said "You got it" with a big smile.
The next morning when I got to the counter he said "That was a bran muffing and light no sugar, right?". I was amazed, but agreed. From that day on he never asked, just smiled and handed me my little brown bag. Then I noticed—the regulars, and there were tons of them—-never had to order, he had everything memorized.
What a mind !!! I stopped in after lunch one day and saw him cleaning up. I asked him why he didn’t use his fantastic memory to do something more rewarding and he said "Hey Man, like this is what I do, I don’t know anything else". He was really something special and the business was booming.