Blizzard Barista Keeps Coffee Flowing
Sarah Grillo opened up at Felicia's Saturday morning expecting to serve a few plow drivers, but got slammed.
When the blizzard hit last week, Felicia Revens was away, but she wanted to open up her coffee shop as soon as possible to be a resource for those working the storm. She arranged to have her cousin, Jamie Piscopio, who has a truck, pick up Sarah Grillo, who lives downtown, to have her open up.
The idea was other workers would follow, but with road conditions so bad, it soon became clear that Grillo was going to have to handle things herself.
"We didn't think it was going to be busy," Grillo said. "We opened at 7 and there were plow drivers already waiting."
By 8 a.m., things started getting really busy.
"Everyone that came in kept saying we were the only place open around for miles and miles," said Grillo. "It was just nonstop."
Grillo kept saying "we" but it was an "I" situation. There was only Sarah making coffee, pouring coffee, putting bagels in the oven, cashing people out. Normally, there are 4 to 5 workers on for the morning shift, she said. The wait was longer than normal but Grillo said people were pretty understanding.
"They were actually very patient. They were grateful that we were open which I appreciated," she said.
Meanwhile, Revens kept in contact with Grillo throughout the day. It was frustrating not to be able to help.
"I’m usually there manning the ship," she said. "As she started to get busy, I panicked."
Revens did talk two friends into coming in at around 3 to pitch in. "I owe them a nice dinner!"
As for Grillo, who's been working at Felicia's for 10 years, Revens said, "She did a great job."
Grillo closed up at 6 on Saturday and Piscopio gave her a ride home. "I was just tired. I didn’t have two seconds to clean up, to get a cup of coffee myself," she said. At home, she said, "I had some beef stew and just relaxed."
She was back on the job Monday.