the joy of work you love

When I stopped to talk with the baker, I could feel her warmth.

I asked about the bread boards. I admired the fine craftsmanship of the boards, the worn wooden surface, and the pattern of cut marks from serrated knives slicing freshly-baked bread. Her fingers danced lightly across the grain as though caressing a loved one.

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We talked for a few minutes about the life of a maker. I told her I knew it was hard work – baking. And she acknowledged, yes it was. She shared that she longed to visit the bakery as a customer and just sit and enjoy the experience. We talked about the trade-offs when your work is something you love. Less money. More joy.

When I complimented the baked goods and the cappuccino and the lovely ambiance, she beamed. She is a part of this fine business, Sub Rosa Bakery, that makes life better for so many.

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Before we parted ways, she said something simple and profound.

I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.

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Wearing my camera around my neck, I said that I feel the same about making pictures.  

As my youngest son prepares to graduate from college this spring, and the pressure to get a job falls upon his shoulders, I wish I could convince him of this lesson.  

Whatever the activity, once we love it, the task opens us to all that is holy and our effort leads us into the flow of aliveness that is within us and around us.
— Mark Nepo, The One Life We’re Given