After the last two months, we all know what a familiar face is.
It's the person you eat breakfast with, it's the person you watch TV with, it's the person you walk the dog with, it's the person you do laundry with.
But, after the last two months, we realise how much we miss another lot of familiar faces.
"Large latte, please, and a small dirty chai."
"Avo on toast, please."
"Two ham and cheese toasties, thanks."
"Can we have a seat by the window?"
"Have you got any sourdough baked today?"
All those requests are usually met by a knowing smile, a nod and a positive conversational reply.
"Beautiful day, isn't it?"
"That's a nice jumper, you have on."
Yes, we've missing eating out - breakfast, lunch and dinner, at our favourite place. We are creatures of habit and we know what we like and where we like to get it.
Local restaurants and cafes have been putting on a brave face during the coronavirus crisis, many staying open to offer the basics, even though it's been a money-losing proposition.
Why? Because they do not want to break the bonds of friendship, of service, of reliability, that have been built up over time.
So it is with great relief we celebrate the reopening of the restaurant trade in Newcastle.
Lisa Rockman's comprehensive guide to reopenings lists more than 100 venues. Enjoy reading in Weekender this Saturday.
We are sharing Lisa's full list of restaurants with our valued subscribers tonight, before it publishes in tomorrow's magazine, as a special celebration of our favourite local eats, cafes, hangouts and all those places we've been missing.
We're back in business!
- Jim Kellar is the editor of the Herald's Weekender magazine.