I love coffee shops. The sit down, work on your thesis or read–coffee shops. It started back in high school when my best friend and I would go to Arabica’s around our neighborhood to work on school projects, study for tests or have our own two-man book reviews. Ever since, the place always had a feel of bliss for me. Ethereal, Eclectic and Inspiring bliss. You walk into a good coffee shop and feel that everyone there is being creative in their own special way.
The day to day activity of life had slowed down my visits to any coffee shops for a while. But recently, I found myself needing a place to sit myself while my kid attended one of her current “must join or I will die” after school activities. Parents were not allowed to stay and observe and I didn’t feel like driving all the way back home.
Lo and behold, the heavens shone a light on a nearby coffee shop. I have posted here ever since and immediately fell right into the groove from my first visit. I was able to journal with deep emotions and read my book with a keener sense of understanding. I even sent out the most meaningful email responses none have ever penned. (Well, typed actually. You get the idea)
I say this with tongue in cheek but honestly, you can’t deny the overall feel of reflection vibing off of folks. With the quiet flow of Indie music piping through the speakers and the sight of persons free to be bold with their self-expression.
One such individual caught my eye the instant I walked into the coffee shop that first day. A young and pretty barista stood behind the counter. She had her eyes outlined with a black smoky rim and had drawn black diamond shapes the length of the left side of her face, from the top of her eye down to her chin. One blue diamond broke up the black trail. The shaved left side of her head added to her edgy look. But in its own way, it was still quite soft and feminine and looked lovely on her. Perhaps her bubbly and kind attitude added to the softness of the dramatic look.
I quickly envied this young lady of her confidence. Again, adding to the overall feel of the coffee shop being a place where you can be who you want to be.
The next week, I was surprised to see the same barista but with a new design on her face. I don’t know why I assumed the week before was a one shot deal. To observe some celebration that I was not aware of. But I thought: how cool is it to work at a place where you can do this kind of thing? Be who you want to be? And be accepted?! I ordered my Chai tea and smiled at the prospect of such a thing.
I found myself looking forward to see what she was going to do the next week. And I was not disappointed. This time, she had a rainbow of beautiful eye shadow colors blended nicely over her lids which were accented by a sprinkle of small silk flowers that matched her choice of shadows. The flowers were arranged once again over the left side of her face. A nice spray that started above her eyebrow and scattered to her mid-cheek.
I finally spoke about her face art and told her that I loved her bouquet. We talked for a moment of how she kept the flowers in place and about the brand of eye shadow she uses. Adding to my first impression that she was a nice young lady.
The emotion of the coffee shop on this particular visit was shattered moments later when an older gentleman walked into the place. After marching up to the counter and kindly being welcomed into the establishment and asking for his order, the man responded with a harsh: “What is that crap all over your face?”
My barista, as she has now been pegged, kept her cool and replied: “They are flowers, sir. What can I get for you?”
Who did this murderer of creativity think he was barging into my land of inspiration and ruining the bliss felt by all? In honesty, I think I was more offended than the barista! So much so, I felt it necessary to speak to her of his rudeness and compliment her on handling herself aright! I hope on my next visits, that this man never infects my haven with his presence ever again.
It saddens me to wonder: Can it be that not all feel the effect of the quintessential coffee house? Perhaps some feel that it is just a place to drink a caffeine-infused beverage.
None can be that obtuse could they?