I will be the first to admit it, I probably spend way too much time and money at coffee shops.
Honestly it really is one of my favorite things to do and I do not see this love dying any time soon. I know I am not the only person out there who frequents coffee shops as much as I do. How do I know? I see many of the same people whenever I visit coffee shops and there have been countless times where the baristas know certain customers by name. This is all too real in my life, and this is even true for my mom!
There is a drive through Starbucks by my house and I honestly do not go there that often because it is not my favorite coffee, but whenever I go and order a drink for my mother they know exactly who I am because she goes there all the time (apparently) and the reaction over the speaker is hilarious when they figure out who I am…
“Welcome to Starbucks how can I help you?”
“Hello, can I get a soy, upside-down caramel…”
“Oh my goodness is this Debbie’s daughter?”
“…yes, yes it is.”
“Oh girl we know your mom. I got you covered.”
I kid you not. I find it cute and comedic all at the same time, but it is interactions like these that had me thinking and brought me to this conclusion…
Coffee brings people together.
I would know firsthand as one of my favorite things to do is drive around LA and Orange County looking for the cutest hole-in-the-wall coffee shops. I know people who judge you on whether or not you put creamer into your coffee or not and this is a serious issue with them. Apparently, if you put creamer into your coffee, then you are not a real coffee drinker. I definitely put creamer into my coffee and it is because I think it tastes delicious and I love the blend of the cream with the coffee. It is delicious. There. I said it. I PUT CREAMER INTO MY COFFEE! Okay rant over.
Anyways, every time I go to a coffee shop, whether it is a new one or one that I frequent, I always see a part of people having some sort of conversation. People love to chat in coffee shops because its relaxing, fun, and come on, who does not like the smell of coffee?
Coffee shops offer a space where people can come together and have an intellectual, emotional, and/or important conversation. I cannot even count on my finger how many times I have gone to a coffee shop and had a conversation with someone that influence my worldview or changed my perspective. It is the perfect place to listen and be heard.
Also, it is a perfect place to just think things through.
Life can be a little hectic sometimes and maybe your home is just not cutting it. The coffee shop offers a great place for a little break from the everyday routines we can get caught in, and allows for a bit of release. I journal quite a bit at coffee shops and sometimes, I escape into different realities offered by a good book or a T.V. show that also allows for a bit of a mind break.
I remember towards the end of the semester last year I went to one of my favorite coffee shops in downtown Phoenix to catch a break from campus life (Yes, it can be a bit much sometimes). While I was there, I met a gentleman who was determined to make a difference in the world by telling people about the amazing recovery he has after discovering he had a serious mental illness and wow, his words were an answer to prayer that day and every day after. This goes back to my previous point about important conversations in coffee shops, but seriously, if I did not go to that coffee shop looking for some time to think I never would have had that conversation.
So why write about coffee shops? Well, coffee shops hold a very special place in my heart and have played a very important role in my adult life because, somehow, the conversations I have there are some of the most enlightening. So, to all my coffee shop goers and coffee drinkers. Go to those coffee shops! They truly are a small and beautiful treasure.