The Bean closed. That’s the coffee shop next to our bus stop where we’ve been buying morning muffins for the past six years. It’s been there as long as I’ve lived in the East Village. The coffee was served too hot and the muffins were too big, but the people who worked there were awesome.

They always let us stand in there on cold or rainy days while we waited for the bus, even if we didn’t buy anything. They used to help me make change when I forgot my Metrocard. They knew to give Mazzy and Harlow their muffins in two separate bags.

The neighborhood police officers loved The Bean too. I think there was a shift change at the same time we got the bus, because a bunch of cops always walked in the same time we did. They always let us go ahead of them in line because they knew we were trying to make the bus to get to school.

I wish I had known The Bean was closing before I saw the locked doors and empty storefront the other morning. We would have gone there on a day when we weren’t rushed and properly introduced ourselves. I would have learned the people’s names and left bigger tips. I would have asked who painted the Disney characters on their holiday windows every year and told them how much my kids looked forward to them.

It was just a regular neighborhood coffee shop, but it hit me this morning how much it had become part of our daily routine and how much we will miss it. We took you for granted, The Bean! And now you’ve taken your outside benches, which we sat on every single day with our coffee and our muffins while we waited for the bus.

An era is over. We are bummed.