GO sta­tion java shop won’t be de­railed

Cou­ple were to make way for Tim­mies

Toronto Sun - - NEWS - JOE WARMINGTON jwarm­ing­ton@post­media.com

AJAX — Mike Chung had al­ready started ap­ply­ing for jobs.

He and his wife, who came to Canada six years ago from China, had al­ready re­ceived the evic­tion no­tice from Metrolinx in May that their lease had ex­pired on their Deja Vu cof­fee shop at the Ajax Go Sta­tion.

“We were go­ing to be re­placed by a Tim Hor­tons,” said Chung. “We knew what it meant. It meant we had to go.”

There are al­ready sev­eral Tim Hor­tons lo­ca­tions right around the cor­ner, so it re­ally felt like a David ver­sus Go­liath sit­u­a­tion.

Noth­ing against Tim Hor­tons, which cer­tainly is a ter­rific es­tab­lish­ment, but many peo­ple stood up in favour of Mike’s ex­is­tence, too.

One of those was MPP Rod Phillips, who at the time was still vy­ing for the job he ended up win­ning.

“The thing is, I had been go­ing there al­most every day at 5:45 a.m. to meet the great con­stituents and saw how much his cus­tomers loved him, how much he loved his cus­tomers and how good the cof­fee and food was, too.”

Ev­ery­body loves Tim Hor­tons, but not nec­es­sar­ily at the ex­pense of the lit­tle guy and his wife who had found a lit­tle niche and job for them­selves as they raise their daugh­ter.

Phillips didn’t much like the idea of putting them on the unem­ploy­ment line.

“I thought there was a way for him to be able to stay and for other busi­nesses to flour­ish, too.”

He was right and Metrolinx saw it that way too.

Deja Vu’s lease has been ex­tended in­def­i­nitely.

Chung said he was told that even Tim Hor­tons was OK with it.

And on the very day that Phillips was in the heart of his rid­ing to an­nounce that Ajax Downs and Casino Ajax were go­ing to stay open, he popped in to see Chung, who also re­ceived a stay of ex­e­cu­tion.

“I am still here and I am happy,” said Chung. “I want to thank Rod and Metrolinx and my cus­tomers for stand­ing up for me.”

It means his fa­mous ba­con let­tuce and tomato sand­wiches are still the rage and he gets to see his friends again.

Deja Vu is the kind of place where if the owner doesn’t know your name, he cer­tainly knows what you’ll take in your cof­fee and what you’ll or­der.

“I al­ways sur­prise the bus driv­ers and rid­ers that I re­mem­ber what they like,” Chung said with a smile.

He’s no longer look­ing for a job. He has a job.

DAVE ABEL/TORONTO SUN

MPP Rod Phillips serves up a cup of cof­fee for Deja Vu cafe owner Mike Chung af­ter find­ing out that his restau­rant will be al­lowed to stay.

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