The Equator Coffee Shop at 451 Ottawa Street, Almonte, ON K0A 1A0 (613) 256-5960 email@example.com was again today its own “rotating cast of blends and single origins brewed fresh”. We have so much to be thankful for, living here in Almonte, as both Linda and I agreed – that is, when we had a moment to distract ourselves from the unending brilliance of her son Walker and his amplified persuasion upon the arrival of his (and my) friend Jill. Precedent to my rally with Jill today (we had earlier arranged to meet for coffee) I had no idea whatsoever that she and Walker were familiar to one another. I was astonishingly mistaken. Apart from an age difference of about 30 years, there was until today nothing I knew aforehand which would have united Jill and Walker. Turns out however, upon her entry into the coffee shop, Walker all but exploded with enthusiasm, leaping from his chair where he, his mother Linda and I were seated about the small square table, and dashed towards Jill to welcome her (my hitherto named but otherwise undisclosed “girl friend”) into the fold to join our conversance.
Perhaps I should back up. The idea of meeting with Jill for coffee today had tumbled into my mind less than an hour earlier as I completed my afternoon attendance at the car wash in Stittsville. While returning homeward I telephoned Jill and proposed that we rally for coffee at Equator. She agreed and we accordingly set a time. I arrived at the coffee shop in Almonte ahead of schedule. After meeting with the barista at the appointed cashier and, with his exceedingly generous and very apt help, settling the anticipated orders (a double shot espresso for me and a brewed latte with steamed milk for Jill) I proceeded to walk to the gentleman’s room to void my bladder. En route there I passed by two people adjacent the wall sipping coffees. I suddenly heard, “Hello, Mr. Chapman!” I turned to see a woman whom I instantly recognized (seated against the wall, facing out in my direction) with a young man (seated with his back to me, facing towards the wall). It took me a moment to assemble the detail and digest it, but I then realized to my entire delight that the woman was the daughter of a former client and the young man was her son, the grandson of my erstwhile client. What I hadn’t reckoned however was the prominent development of her son whom I hadn’t seen (an occasion we later revisited) since he was fourteen years old while attending a TYPS (Take Young People Seriously) meeting at which I had delivered a short address about law. The young man (as we later also unraveled) turns 28 years old tomorrow! Oddly enough I recognized the young gentleman partly because I had in the interim seen him walking dogs in the neighbourhood. Otherwise I had completely lost touch with him and his family.
The most compelling feature of today’s rendezvous was however not merely reuniting lost acquaintances; rather it was my introduction to the extraordinary evolution of this young man who – by way of illustration – I can summarize by repeating (as I did today on more than one occasion) that I would vote for him if he ran for political election. I will not attempt to capture the brilliance and gusto of his proposed political platforms except to say, as I did to him, that the future lies with young people and that he had succeeded today unequivocally to capture the attention and devoted interest of three adults. There wasn’t a kernel of what he said which didn’t resonate with me. His vital interest in current topical issues was supplemented by extraordinary intelligence and seemingly vast knowledge of history. He was particularly enthused by the likes of Margaret Thatcher and Winston Churchill (as well as acknowledging – though less hospitably – Hitler and Trump to both of whom he levelled biting and exceptionally astute commentary). What astounded me in particular was his grasp of futuristic concerns over the appeal of immediate though implacable gains. He spoke for youth with the voice of a shrewd senior; and, I will add unhesitatingly, he broached subjects which our current political advocates would do well to consider in earnest. The young gentleman spoke so well and scintillatingly that I will avoid trying to do his observations credit. I say this not to escape clarity; rather to avoid unmerited and unwitting obfuscation.
LIke any conference of especial import the time flew by. It was eventually apparent that we had prevailed upon the social generosity of the mother and son so we bid them farewell. As they withdrew we exhaled, shaking our heads to express our regret but remaining delight, mavelling at the dynamism of what we had just witnessed. The novelty of thought which the young man had propelled, the singular capacity for language (both vocabulary and grammar) and the rejuvenating influence of the entire experience left us fully nourished and enhanced. It wasn’t the quaint, quiet and relaxed confab one normally associates with a languishing hour at the coffee shop. I am happy too that the mother and I conjoined as well our limitless affection for Almonte. It is a propitious reminder that often the best is right before one’s eyes!