Making spirits ‘rise’: Ottawa woman’s bread deliveries delight co-workers

OTTAWA — Lynn Côte has been busy during this pandemic. She says she has lost count, but has baked hundreds of loaves of bread.

Every Saturday morning, she gets up early and gets to work and then hand delivers bread to her co-workers at Export Development Canada, traveling all the way from Orléans to Carp.

“I started it as the pandemic started because I was looking for something to do to keep me busy because I was bored,” says Côte.

Lynn Cote's homemade bread

Côte hosts a trivia game for her colleagues on Friday mornings; the winner gets the special delivery the next day, and gets the chance to select a few other lucky co-workers too. 

“It’s not about the bread. It’s so much more than bread,” says Konstantin Fedotov, a co-worker and friend. “She comes in and just makes people feel that we are still connected. I think that’s the most important thing.”

It’s exciting not just for the “bread winners” but for Côte as well.

“What’s really incredible to me is you think you know people when you work with them,” says Côte, “but when you see them in their natural environment with their families, you get to know them at a different level.”

She uses this time to visit, talk, and just connect with friends in a time when connections are needed more than ever.

“Whenever she comes, we have a good chat,” says Fedotov. “She would really use the opportunity to check up on people.”

Her coworkers were so appreciative, they decided to surprise her one day, showing up at her house unannounced with instruments in hand. 

Fedotov re-wrote the lyrics to The Beatles classic song, “I Want to Hold Your Hand.” Instead, the group belted out their own version called “I Want to Eat Your Bread”. Côte says she was surprised calling it “a beautiful moment.”

“For many people she’s the first person they’ve seen in weeks outside of their family and household,” says Fedotov. “I think it’s really like a sunshine coming to the house.”

If there is one thing that everyone can agree on, it’s that this is the best bread they have ever had.

“The bread is amazing,” Says Fedotov. “I think by the time she drives home, it’s gone.”

“Even if it’s a little thing. You can’t fix everything that’s sort of not going right,” says Côte. “It touches people in a way.” 

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