My Favorite Stranger: Carrie

Nearly three times a week I stumble into Starbucks on 13th and 49th at 7:30AM, sleep drunk and on edge. The yoga pants-wearing trophy wives in front of me quickly order their grande non-fat latte with caramel drizzle and fly back out the door to their Escalades. Meanwhile, I stand, staring with my neck kinked upward at the menu as if it were my first time, every time. (I’d rather be in bed, binging on Scandal.)

Am I feeling fruity? Maybe an iced tea lemonade? Or do I need an extra shot in a latte to wake me up? (Lord knows an extra shot never hurt anyone.)


Either way, one barista always helps me decide. She greets me with a grin that says, Hey girl, you’re back… and I can tell you need a quad shot today. It’s as simple as that: she knows me. Carrie knows me.

Hey Girl

I’m not sure if it’s her red hair, vibrant personality, or the smile that’s glued to her face, but Carrie has quickly become a favorite. What I like best about her is that she’s so damn good at her job. I am the type of person that requires help in making decisions—almost all decisions. Whether it is where to go for dinner or what color socks to buy… I always need reassurance.

This is where Carrie comes in.

While most Starbuckians order the same drink every morning, I am one that always switches it up, leaving my barista questioning what I am craving each time. But with Carrie, I can vaguely describe the taste I’m looking for and she already has my drink whipped up and waiting for me on the other side of the counter. “Nope we don’t have the Blackberry Mojito this summer, but I can do a green tea lemonade with raspberry syrup and berries. You’ll love it.” (FYI, if you haven’t tried this… you NEED to.)

The energy Carrie emits is contagious. Every time I hobble in, I remember that Carrie has been cranking out espressos for people like me since 5AM and still wears a huge smile on her face. Every time I walk out, I feel a little lighter in my step and a little more awake. Blame it on the excess of espresso, but Carrie is truly incredible.

Here’s to you, girl. Keep doin’ your thing. I’ll see you in the morning.

Loving Carrie? Read about Becky, Traci, Angelique, Jeff and his coworkers, the Schiavo family and friends, and the Arizona boys—my other favorite strangers.

1 Response

  1. Cassie Wiste

    Hello Alexandra!
    I want to start this by first saying please forgive me by using this adorable story to try to contact you! I was given your contact information by Vanessa at Women’s Impact and had the joy of reading all your fun entries on your blog but wasn’t sure how to send you a personal message so figured I would reply to the one I felt was my most favorite!!

    Vanessa thought that your feeling about distant strangers having the ability to connect on a deeper level would be a great way for me to share a great event that is happening this Sunday.

    Every year we hold a Rally for Race Unity & Walk at Rabanus Park in Fargo. We feel that a part of empowering the community is promoting unity and understanding between different cultures and traditions. Education builds strength & love.

    We have art activities for children and this year we will have ethnic desserts for sampling.

    If your at all interested or would like a flyer just to share with your friends or family I would be glad to share it!!

    Thanks for all the positive and humorous spin you put on life’s happenings and just being a bright spirit in our community. I look forward to reading more on Area Voices!


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