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Day 14: Old School Fika

i’m not perfect. and there are some days that you just can’t do everything you want or plan to do. you know that feeling… like 24 hours in a day are not nearly enough. and the way the weeks have been speeding by are not helping the matter. some days it’s just not possible to fit all the pieces of the puzzle together…

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what i’m trying to say is that i didn’t visit a new cafe today. i know. bad girl. you see, i’ve had a good flow and the perfect time of day to do my cafe visits, and so far, that’s been working for me. and it still will work just fine. it’s just that today i had other business to tend to. important, amazing business. sometimes you’ve just got to prioritize, you know?

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but, i did fika. just not downtown. i didn’t live in sweden for 3 years for nothing! of course, as always, i’m gonna share my fika break with y’all. from home. because, if you remember, i have written about the importance and complete coziness & joy of hosting a fika at home. i’d say that that’s how fikas began, and how they should be. yes. that’s right. i had an old school fika break.

in my apartment complex we have a clubhouse, as many places do. our clubhouse is located on the ground floor beneath us, so that’s super convenient. in the clubhouse they have coffee available all. day. long. and i’m not talking about some machine with hospital, water-downed coffee, in a little white styrofoam cup. no siree, bob. this coffee, station – let’s call it that – has a machine that grinds the beans and brews them fresh, right then & there. all i need to do is put my cup under, make a few button choices, and voila! fresh brewed coffee. anytime of the day. and, they have a fridge there with creamer inside, incase you need to make your coffee a little more creamier, which i do. they have ice. for iced coffee, of course. sugar, stirrers, a sink, tables, chairs, barstools, sofas, a tv, mac computers. yeah. its’s pretty pimped out.

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and would you believe that i had not been down to get coffee until yesterday?! how sad is that? but, i brew my coffee in my home in the mornings and then i have coffee out & about during the day. i’m not much of a coffee drinker at night. by then, i’ve moved on to wine or beer. so, i haven’t needed to go to the clubhouse for coffee. but, i’ve watched people come in and out with their cups and mugs full of piping hot coffee as they sit down by the fire pit outside. or in their travel mugs as they head off to work. saturday & sunday mornings are the most active. my balcony overlooks all of this, so i can see all the comings and goings. hehe. lucky me.

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sunday i couldn’t stand it any longer. i was home all day, so around mid-afternoon, when i started craving coffee, i decided that this would be the day! yep. i grabbed our two thermoses and walked down to fill those babies up with fresh coffee. i was all alone inside the clubhouse, but on my way back up to my apartment, a fellow resident (who was sitting by the fire pit) began chatting with me.

thirty minutes later, and a long conversation about the viet nam war (he was a war vet – and doesn’t believe in war because of the things he saw & did), two friends who had passed away in the past two days, his desire to take off & move to the coast of maine, and the meaning of life (we literally talked about that), i was back upstairs ready to enjoy my fika break.

today, i haven’t had an inspiring conversation like yesterday’s, but i was just as inspired during my fika break. by the way, i just peeked outside and saw the man (i never got his name.) sitting by the fire pit, talking to another man, i am sure about the meaning of life again. anyway, i am inspired and excited because of all that happened during my regular cafe visit time. you know, that business i had to take care of…

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you see, after perusing craigslist last thursday for small office spaces for rent in downtown asheville, just for the heck of it, i found one that looked interesting. and dirt cheap. so, what did i do? i ringed the number on friday morning, and before i knew it, i was meeting the owner downtown to see the space. it is a shared office, with a lady who is a counselor, but only needs it on mondays. it’s in a old building (shaped like an iron!) with an amazing rooftop view of asheville and the surrounding mountains. it was all so surreal that this possibility was unfolding.

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i loved the little office space, only a room maybe 10 x 10 (ft.). and i couldn’t believe that it was in the middle of everything. and the landlord was super nice. but, i needed to think about it over the weekend. i couldn’t be totally impulsive, could i?  well, to be honest, i actually didn’t really think about it during the weekend. i just kind of let it be… until monday morning. then, it was time to face the music. should i get it, or not? i was terrified of making a decision. my love tried to help me see all angles of the decision, even making a decision for me in order to help me see what my reaction would be – and yes, phoebe totally did that when rachel was pregnant on friends. well, i clearly felt disappointed and like i was being stupid if i didn’t take it. and if i did, i felt scared.

so, i closed my eyes for a few moments and took some deep breaths, and after a while, it was clear. i realized that, for me, there was no question. yes, i was frightened by what other people might think – like how crazy i would be to rent a tiny office when i don’t have any clients or a business. and i was also frightened by the fact that it meant that i’d be taking a serious step forward. and i told my love all of that. but, when it came right down to it, i knew what was really right, deep in my soul.

so, i called the landlord. and i met my new office mate downtown about an hour later to get my keys.

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that, my friends, is what i was doing during my regular cafe/fika time today. that’s why my fika has been at home. nevertheless, i met a new person, had new conversations, and even made another fika date with my new office buddy – a fellow writer & counselor. i followed my dreams and took a leap of faith. we’ll see what comes of it!

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i’ll be back on track tomorrow. today, i needed to soak all of this in and enjoy the excitement and possibilities that lie ahead. hope you understand. wink wink.

namaste. /liz

About Liz McGuire

Liz is a blogger, writer, and amateur photographer in Asheville, NC. She is a returning expat, re-adjusting to American life after living in Sweden for the past three years. On any given day you can find her planning her next adventure with her wife, blogging away on her blog (www.belovelive.com) about daily life and social issues, and discovering little hidden gems and secret places in the city. She faithfully totes her camera and her coffee mug everywhere she goes. And she’s always up for a conversation about spirituality, politics, or other taboo topics. You can find her on the web at www.belovelive.com.

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