* It was Sunday, January 3, and I was already at the cafe at 1 pm getting ready for our general cleaning. I was excited, it felt like we were preparing the cafe for our grand opening. But what was unusual about that day was the cast of people I was getting help from. Our friends Vinci and Zadl got their hands dirty and their feet wet as we scrubbed and washed everything in sight. Vinci did a great job with the refrigerators and Zadl also did well cleaning the blenders. Ate Marisse and Neil were also there to help.They sanitized our kitchen stuff cleaned the machines, and did most of the work in the kitchen area.
* Later that afternoon, our customers, Dan Sta. Romana and Mike Garcia, also went over to help out and then another customer, Budik of Marketwire, dropped by to celebrate the day's general cleaning after-party. Manong and Joyceann arrived just in time for our celebratory coffee.
* It was a great feeling, having accomplished a lot in such a short time. We really looked forward to just sitting at the cafe and drinking coffee all day. We were all waiting for that moment when things just got back to normal. And looking at the people I'm with when we were celebrating and sipping our Americanos, I was amazed at the fact that most of these people were our customers who have stretched the meaning of the word "support". So thank you guys, that Sunday afternoon was very special for us all. Thank you for the love and support. And thank you for enduring 2 long weeks without drinking coffee that isn't Cafe Antonio!
* Monday. Our first day of the year. I woke up at 6 am and then decided to get up at 8 instead. I did some accounting stuff, do-lists, and all those tiny details that we need to clear out before the cafe opens. I took a nap then did errands at 11:30 am. We had our Bible Study at 2 pm with the staff plus Dan and Mike. It was my first time to lead a BS after a very long time. We were all in a reflective mood as we thanked God for the blessings He had given us and the challenges we have faced in 2009.
* Last night we had a huge crowd. And we are very thankful for a strong first day for the cafe. We hope the days to come will be as good. We promise to serve you better this year! God bless everyone!