January 30, 2008
A LoveLetter to Ken's
I have been meaning to write this love letter to Ken's Market for at least the past 15 years, but it's easy to take every day occurrences, people and places in your life for granted. I'm on this mission recently to identify and appreciate all the nuances in my life that make it great-the warm, honey-I'm-home kiss from my husband, the spontaneous hug from my independent teen, that first sip of coffee in the morning, the supportive phone call from a good friend and the unsung community jewel that is Ken's Market.
I have lived on Seventh Avenue West, one block west of Ken's, for the past 19 years.
When I first became a customer I was newly married. Four years later I had a baby. At that time Joe and Eric, two of the current owners (George is the third), were high school kids, bagging and checking. I am now middle-aged, my "baby" is in the 10th grade and Joe and Eric both have wives and young families of their own.
They'll make you a latte, carry your groceries to the car, blow up balloons for your kid's birthday party, sponsor a community baseball team... nothing that doesn't happen at dozens of other grocery stores in Seattle or across the country. But I swear it feels different at Ken's-more authentic, more down home, more expansive and gracious.
They make you feel like family, like you are simply going to your very large pantry down the street to grab a quart of milk-and your family is there, chatting you up and checking in on your life. I know that I am not alone in feeling this way. The people at Ken's have not only found a way into our cupboards but into our hearts, as well.
A local grocery store... it's a small thing, really. But isn't it the sum total of the small things in our lives that make them not just livable, but worth living?
Ken's is the place where everybody knows your name. Cheers to my extended neighborhood family: the people of Ken's Market.