Friendly Faces in Familiar Places

Emma with one of her coworkers and good friends, Michael.

The Public Market. A place I have frequented many times in the past three years of my time in Milwaukee. Every time I go, I get something I haven’t tried before and I have yet to be disappointed. This time was no different. I decided to try The Green Kitchen. The food looked healthy, they had vegetarian options and, best of all, the line was short! The food was great as it always is, but what made my meal even better was interviewing the worker who made me it.

We had more in common than I originally thought. She was also a college student attending University of Wisconsin- Milwaukee. She was in her third year of school. Her name was Emma and she loved her job. This was not what I was expecting as I have worked in food service before and it was not a pleasant experience. The best part for her had nothing to do with what she was doing and everything to do with who she was with. Emma loves her coworkers and says she couldn’t imagine working anywhere else. That must be what has kept her for the past year because it’s not always easy. Often times people have unrealistic expectations. They wanted locally sourced, organically grown, vegan products, which makes for an expensive lunch. Despite demanding customers and big lunch rushes Emma stays positive, taking pride in providing some of the healthiest food you will see in the Public Market.

It’s fun to try new things, but it’s even more fun to meet new people. Most people are generally friendlier and more willing to talk than you think. Often times I will shy away from meeting new people, but today was fun. I enjoyed getting to know Emma and it made me feel good knowing my purchase is going to someone I know and can relate to. It‘s good to push my comfort zone and to get to know a friendly face. It certainly did not disappoint.

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