Wednesday, March 21 started out like any other day for Jeff. He woke up at 3 AM, threw on some clothes, and ran downstairs to unlock his bike. The ride to the bakery in Bushwick was quick at this hour. Jeff waved to the other denizens on the block as he unlocked the shop, and the first employees trudged in about 15 minutes later. Within no time, the place was emitting its usual hum, the machines whirring while the employees worked to bake bread, bagels, and other confectionaries.
Then came a knock at the door.
Jeff looked at his watch. It was 4:46, still almost an hour until opening. He opened the door cautiously to find a young woman in a pink knit cap and scarf standing out front. Her eyes perked up when she saw Jeff appear.
“Umm, yes?” Jeff asked. Maybe this girl had gotten lost after a night of partying and needed directions back to the subway, he thought.
“Hi! Are you open yet? Am I the first one on line? Did you run out?” Her perky questions shook the last vestiges of sleep from Jeff’s eyes and he back stared at her quizzically.
“Miss, we don’t open for another hour. We haven’t run out of anything.”
“OK great! I’ll just wait out here then!”
Jeff looked at her again. Maybe she was just really hungry and had set her alarm too early. Since she was content waiting outside in the cold, he left her to it and went back inside.