Wisconsin Cheese Lady

I previously wrote about time I spent in Detroit on a road trip with a friend this summer.   After leaving Detroit, we decided we would make our way to Minneapolis with a quick stop in Madison, Wisconsin. I named my first rabbit Madison O’ Hare and always had an obsession with the name, therefore, an obsession with the city. I have never been to Madison and had no idea what to expect from the city. In my mind I pictured statues of my cute rabbit along the streets and white buildings glistening in the sun. I also pictured everyone looking exactly the same for some odd reason. Trust me when I tell you that the city of Madison has always been on my mind. So we arrive in the city and of course the first thing I Google is “where is the best cheese in Madison?” I followed Google’s suggestions and ended up at a cute cheese shop right on the main street. I did not see any pictures of my rabbit and each building was very different from one another, despite my vision. The town was quaint, very clean and extremely quiet.

My friend and I walked into the cheese shop and I immediately made eye contact with the woman behind the counter. As soon as I made eye contact I blurted out “Do you create cheese boards here?” She did not respond right away, so I added, “If you do not make them, I can buy three different small ones and a box of crackers.” Once again she looked at us and did not answer so I continued to talk about my vision for a cheese board. She waited until I was done speaking and said, “Yes, we have cheeseboards…now go outside, sit down and watch the world go by and Ill bring you the cheese board.” I was shocked; I couldn’t understand why she was so rude. We walked outside, did yoga on the grass and waited for our cheese plate. Thirty long minutes later our cheese came and we enjoyed every last morsel.

Looking back now, I can understand why the woman told me to go outside and sit down and watch the world go by. Growing up on the east coast and spending plenty of time in New York City has molded me into a person who expects high and fast service. In Philadelphia if you are not quick to order your food, you can be kindly pushed to the back of the line or plain ignored. Making eye contact with someone behind the register or a bar will guarantee you are seen. This is how I grew up and this is my normal. However, the fast pace lifestyle is not part of the Wisconsin culture. I thought the woman was rude, and I am sure she thought I was rude since I never gave her time to respond. I learned that day to take a breath, sit down and watch the world go by. The world will always be turning, people will always be coming and going, lights will always be flashing, but only you can control your own movements. Take time to appreciate what surrounds you rather than only focusing on yourself. The woman behind the counter taught me a valuable lesson and I will be grateful for the piece of wellness she offered me that day.


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