Sara Naumann blog Photo Friday cafe table

This scene was from my recent trip to Krakow, where I spent much of my eating/coffee break times with a pen and journal. I love looking back on this photo because it immediately sets me at ease. Everything is so careful—the table is polished, there’s a real flower in a glass vase…and look at that (typically Polish) fanned arrangement of tiny napkins in the holder.

The coffee is small and strong and simple. You won’t find a soy macchiato around here, not that I think that sounds especially appealing anyway.

On the morning I sat at this table, two elderly couples arrived and sat nearby at one of their own highly polished tables. The men wore ties, vests and tweed jackets; the women had dresses and heels. They must have been in their eighties, but still dressed as carefully as they probably did in their twenties.

It felt like stepping back in time. No phones on the table, no one chattering into a bluetooth. No one in jeans, even—the waiter wore a white shirt and an apron.

I fell in love with the moment.

When I start to feel harried, or the pressures of current deadlines or stress or overwhelm (which is happening a lot this month) I can see this picture in my mind’s eye. Suddenly the pace slows. I think of how my pen feels moving across the page, the sweet taste of sugar in my coffee. I hear the mysterious conversation of the Polish people next to me, see the distant nod of the waiter as he works my order around my poor pronunciation.

The table shines. The flower rests in its vase. I write and I drink and I write some more. It is, in my mind, the most peaceful of places and times and situations.

Where are your moments like this, when time seems to be—for once—moving at a reasonable pace, instead of rushing around you?

Happy Friday!