I've been sleeping in the hostel this week. Unfortunately, I'm not very good at it...sounds of partied out guests thundering up our wooden stairs don't wake me...as they should.
"Excuse me, it's 3am, can you please be quiet for our other guests?" are words that should be utter from my lips every night.
But they don't wake me up. Just everyone else.
But I love seeing them in the morning.
Waking up and seeing a big beautiful kitchen, with 14 places set.
Knowing that different faces and stories and lives will soon fill their spots.
Ok. First things first. There must be coffee. There must be tea. "How many people are here this morning? Where are they from?"
Experience has shown me that if they are from England they like tea; Aussies and American's like coffee. It's a toss up otherwise.
Ok so make both, great.
"Chloe, what are we cooking for breakfast?" are the next words naturally out of my mouth. We discuss our options while setting out cereal, fruit juice, jams, honey, milk and sugar.
French toast it is.
"Hello good morning!" mhmm is the normal mumble. Occasionally there are the chipper ones - morning birds. Gotta love 'em.
The usual "Where are you from?" "Why are you here?" is passed between strangers, as they become friends one slurp of cereal at a time.
"Would you like coffee or tea? Perhaps a bit of toast? We're making french toast today, it will be ready in just a moment?"
Words I say everyday. Like a computer, on repeat. But I'm sincere. I love serving them. I love hosting them, letting them know that here, in our walls, they are taken care of.
We wrap up, it's 10am and breakfast is over.
Cereals away, yogurts in the fridge, juice and milk as well. "Is there any more French toast left?" Yes!" I grab a piece as I do dishes. Chloe sweeps, and then we must mop.
Chairs on the table - here we go.
Recycling and garbage outside. Off to the bins I go.
"Bonjour!" mister man who always walks his dog at the same time every day. Good to see you again.
Back in the hostel. Kitchen is clean and closed.
Ten minute power nap. Is anyone on Facebook or Skype? Hmm, I must read my bible before our meeting.
"Is the kitchen still clean?" I think. One last look.
Ahh, voila! It's perfect. Ready for more stories, more faces.
"Lord, let them know here they are safe. Let them know here, they are loved.
Lord, let them know here they are prayed over and cared for. "
Time for our daily meeting. Great. Now everyone cane echo this prayer too.
And we do.