Today I’ll jump forward a bit in my coffee cup timeline. I guess they don’t have to be in chronological order. I obtained this mug from my days in seminary, and it’s the only one I have from an actual coffee shop. Boston Stoker is a chain of coffee shops in and around Dayton, Ohio. Discovered by my friends Keith, Kiel, and Jeff just off the Troy exit on the outskirts north of Dayton on I-75, they passed its location on to me sometime in the late autumn of 2007. During my first year in seminary, I commuted to Findlay, Ohio from my parent’s home in central Indiana every week for class. I would usually leave on Monday night or Tuesday morning, attend class on Tuesday evening, and return on Wednesday. That first year was grueling. It wouldn’t have been possible if my parents hadn’t allowed me to drive their only vehicle back and forth (because I didn’t have one at the time), leaving them stuck at home for those couple of days I was gone each week. It seems ludicrous, but that’s only a small example of how my mom and dad helped me over the years I was getting a college and seminary education. Along the same lines, my friends and I were invited to spend each week at our professor’s home on Monday & Tuesday nights while we were commuting–something we took full advantage of for an entire year! Dr. Gary Staats and his wife Janet opened their home and their lives to us on a level far surpassing the fragile understanding that many of us often have in regard to hospitality. I’m not sure how many trips I made up and down I-75 that year, and in the four years following–they became more frequent as my mom’s health deteriorated–but Boston Stoker was always there to help me along… They had the best coffee in Dayton, and the best bathroom for those much needed pit stops. And for that, I salute them!
Originally posted on Instagram @ajcoffman on April 14, 2014