...the one in which we meet up with a friend for coffee...and more coffee..and even more coffee....
So...Thursday morning...June 27th...Our original plan had us having breakfast in our hotel (it's FREE!), and then briefly heading over to the Gray Line Visitors Center to quickly exchange a voucher for an upcoming tour. We'd then hop on the subway and head southeast for our Lower East Side adventure.
However...plans changed. And that's okay. Because when plans change due to attempts to meet up with a friend - then...it's all good.
I have a friend, Jamie, who works for the American Red Cross. He came to the Kansas City chapter a few years ago, working in Public Affairs...and because I often get drafted to do media interviews during disasters, Jamie and I had gotten to know each other pretty well. A few months ago, Jamie was offered an amazing opportunity to transfer to the Manhattan headquarters of the American Red Cross - and who can blame him, when he jumped at the chance?!
I mean, think about it...Kansas City...vs...Manhattan.
Consequently, I hadn't seen Jamie in awhile - and that needed to be corrected.
Because of my tendency to overplan (don't laugh) every waking moment of our vacation, it had been difficult to find time that worked for both Jamie and I to get together...until we came up with the brilliant plan of having morning coffee.
We needed to exchange our voucher in Hell's Kitchen this morning. The Manhattan office of the American Red Cross is in Hell's Kitchen. And...there just happens to be a Starbucks in Hell's Kitchen (Duh. There's a Starbucks on every corner, it seems, but that's besides the point.) So - it was a no brainer to meet Jamie at the Starbucks in Hell's Kitchen.
We arrived a bit early, before Jamie, and put in our orders. It soon became very apparent that the employees at THIS particular Starbucks were in over their heads. For every drink they got "correct" - they'd mess up two. Rather than throwing the incorrect drinks out - or down the drain - they just offered them up to anyone and everyone who'd take them off their hands. For free. The three of us quickly found that we had five - FIVE - drinks in front of us...only three of which we'd actually ordered.
It was really quite comical to watch...as it wasn't just our order that got totally jacked up.
It. Happened. Every. Time.
I was starting to think we were being secretly filmed for some television show, being "punk'd" - because, really?
HOW CAN YOU CONSISTENTLY SCREW UP SO MANY FREAKIN' ORDERS??!!
It wasn't even that busy. Gah.
And they were so nice about it. They would apologize, and sheepishly offer up the incorrect drink while they scrambled to make it right. Someone would walk in the door, and before they'd even ordered, an employee would be begging, "Do you want this FREE Venti Iced Caramel Macchiato? Please. Take it."
And of course, the befuddled customer would look all suspicious, because, really? When's the last time Starbucks hands out free drinks the minute you walk in the door?? Not to mention - New Yorkers are suspicious of EVERYTHING.
Anyway - I HIGHLY recommend this particular Starbucks - located at 600 8th Ave - if only because you will never believe how inept they are. Although I certainly hope they've got their act together by the time anyone else visits. Hee hee.
Soon, Jamie arrived - and we had a wonderful, albeit short, visit, before he had to scramble on into the office. It was so much fun to hear of how he's settling into NYC...with him giving us tips and advice, especially to Daughter, who now has her heart set on moving to the Big Apple one day.
We were even able to give Jamie one of those five drinks in front of us - and here he probably thought we'd paid for it.
Gratis coffee in NYC with an old friend.
It doesn't get much better, folks.