Ladies’ Underwear

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I was in a coffee shop/café in a small New Mexico town. The place was more café than coffee shop. A waitress met me at the door, menu in hand. I told her I’d be there a while writing and asked if I should sit somewhere out of the way. She said I could sit wherever I wanted, so I chose a spot away from the entrance but near an electrical outlet. The waitress left me with a menu and said she’d be back soon.

I’d never been to this establishment before and (wrongly) assumed I could order a muffin or a glass of iced tea a the counter, then blend in with the other folks drinking coffee and doing whatever work people do in coffee shops. When I walked in around 8:30 on that Monday morning, only one other table was occupied. During the three hours I was there, only a few other customers came in. There’s no blending in when business is so slow.

I ordered a small house blend coffee, which I didn’t really want and shouldn’t have had, but it was the least expensive item on the beverage menu. I also ordered a cinnamon roll, which I’m not usually into, but I’d read online raves about this shop’s variation on the treat.

The waitress asked if I wanted cream in my coffee, and I said yes. She was gone before I could ask for sugar too. I figured there must be sugar packets in the little basket on the table.

Once I got my laptop set up, I looked around the place. There were many arrangements of faded fake flowers, and the titles and covers on the books on the shelves (for sale or only for in-store skimming, I do not know) hinted at religious content. The music drifting softly through the place was of a very calm religious nature. The rendition of “I Saw the Light” playing on the stereo was not the thank God a higher being has saved me from my wicked, wicked self Hank Williams version. I imagine the light this calm chorus saw was a faintly flickering candle barely needed to illuminate the way to the heavenly afterlife the mild singers were sure to find at the end of their gentle lives. Then a woman (the baker?) came from the kitchen and into the dining area. She was wearing the simple, modest dress and white bun covering bonnet that said Mennonite to me. Oh boy. I’d wandered into quite a religious establishment.

The waitress (dressed in a secular pair of jeans and a dark t-shirt) came back to my table bearing a mug of coffee and a cinnamon roll on a disposable plate. I asked her if the shop had WiFi, and (thankfully) she said yes. She was off getting the password for me when I realized there was no sugar in the basket on the table. Drats! What was a sugar fiend like me to do?

I looked down at the large cinnamon roll in front of me. It was topped with pecans and caramel, and I imagined it would be quite sweet. Upon experimentation, I realized if I took a drink of coffee immediately after biting into the roll, I didn’t need even a grain of sugar in my coffee

The cinnamon roll was delicious. Most cinnamon rolls seem to be made with a slightly sweet bread, which I don’t enjoy very much. The base of this roll was more like a sweet biscuit. So yummy!

While I was studying the menu, setting up my laptop, asking about WiFi, waiting for, and then enjoying my treat, a party of three ate breakfast at a table in the front of the café. An elderly couple was visiting with a younger man. I wasn’t eavesdropping carefully on their conversation, but the old people were talking loudly enough for me to pick up a thing or two.

It sounded as if the couple had recently gone somewhere cold on vacation or for a weekend getaway. There was mention of snow, cold temperatures, and a snowmobile.

I had me some ladies’ underwear, the old man said in a voice that boomed through the building.

My eavesdropping ears perked up. This information might be the most interesting ever conveyed in this small-town Christian coffee shop.

My hopes of overhearing a tale of elder cross-dressing kink was dashed when the woman immediately corrected him, saying,Silk underwear! You had silk underwear!

I suppose the man wore a pair of long silk underwear meant to provide warmth during his venture into the winter wonderland. He probably thought about women’s underwear commonly being made of silk and somewhere in his brain silk long johns got tangled into ladies’ underwear. I quickly realized the conversation was not of much interest to me as it was primarily about staying warm in the cold outdoors. Sigh.

Oh well. At leas the cinnamon roll and coffee were delicious.



About Blaize Sun

My name is Blaize Sun. Maybe that's the name my family gave me; maybe it's not. In any case, that's the name I'm using here and now. I've been a rubber tramp for nearly a decade.I like to see places I've never seen before, and I like to visit the places I love again and again. For most of my years on the road, my primary residence was my van. For almost half of the time I was a van dweller, I was going it alone. Now my (male) partner and I (a woman) have a travel trailer we can pull with our truck. We have a little piece of property, and when we're not traveling, we park our little camper there. I was a work camper in a remote National Forest recreation area on a mountain for four seasons. I was a camp host and parking lot attendant for two seasons and wrote a book about my experiences called Confessions of a Work Camper: Tales from the Woods. During the last two seasons as a work camper on that mountain, I was a clerk in a campground store. I'm also a house and pet sitter, and I pick up odd jobs when I can. I'm primarily a writer, but I also create beautiful little collages; hand make hemp jewelry and warm, colorful winter hats; and use my creative and artistic skills to decorate my life and brighten the lives of others. My goal (for my writing and my life) is to be real. I don't like fake, and I don't want to share fake. I want to share my authentic thoughts and feelings. I want to give others space and permission to share their authentic selves. Sometimes I think the best way to support others is to leave them alone and allow them to be. I am more than just a rubber tramp artist. I'm fat. I'm funny. I'm flawed. I try to be kind. I'm often grouchy. I am awed by the stars in the dark desert night. I hope my writing moves people. If my writing makes someone laugh or cry or feel angry or happy or troubled or comforted, I have done my job. If my writing makes someone think and question and try a little harder, I've done my job. If my writing opens a door for someone, changes a life, I have done my job well. I hope you enjoy my blog posts, my word and pictures, the work I've done to express myself in a way others will understand. I hope you appreciate the time and energy I put into each post. I hope you will click the like button each time you like what you have read. I hope you will share posts with the people in your life. I hope you'll leave a comment and share your authentic self with me and this blog's other readers. Thank you for reading.  A writer without readers is very sad indeed.

7 Responses »

  1. I have enjoyed Mennonite bakeries and restaurants very much, although I am a heathen.

    The bakery I went to had the best pretzels I’ve ever eaten. Dark and flavorful, they just shattered into shards of delight when I munched them. The baker said that item was made offsite by blind Mennonite ladies the next county over.

    • Oh, I wish I could try those pretzels! They sound so delicious! I enjoyed your evocative description. Thank you for sharing this memory with us.

  2. Blaize Sun, love your writing! I’m of Mennonite ancestry and Mennonite country in Pennsylvania, and if I’d ever heard some man talking loudly about ladies underwear in the Mennonite cafe I used to frequent, I’d have burst out laughing, just as I did while reading your story! Thank you. I’ll be checking out your book

    • Oh, thank you for these kind words, Stephanie. I’m so glad you enjoyed my story. I really love to make people laugh, so thanks for letting me know my story had that effect on you. Thanks for reading and commenting.

    • Blaize, I must ask if it was the 3 Questions Cafe in Mimbres? I’ve been at City of Rocks SP, NM, the past few days, was going to leave tomorrow heading to Gila Cliff Dwellings via 61, googled restaurants in Mimbres (longing for a hearty breakfast of eggs and home fries, and 3?’s came up, got great reviews and prices. There are some biblical quotes on their website but no mention they’re Mennonites though. They’re closed tomorrow, so I’m going to stay at CoR another day so I can eat there. That’d be wild if were the same place! Happy trails

      • No. Not the same place. I’ve never been to Mimbres. I would love to hear whatyou think about the restaurant there. Wh at are the 3 Questions? And what are the answers to the 3 Questions? And of course, how is the food?

  3. hey friend. oh, religious bakeries. love it. wow, amazes me how similar this sounds to a place I’ve been with Ming in Oregon, I think? I had to double check where you said the location. love the details. I ordered coffee before just to have a place to be, in a cafe, and not drunk a drop of it.

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