I started this series with a reference to Lorelai Gilmore in the Gilmore Girls TV series. She loved her coffee. She was a staple at Luke’s Diner, in part for the coffee and in part for her daily sustenance. I live in a university town that has quite a few great coffee places. That was the original premise of this series. My local coffee places. As I have continued writing I have realized that I needed to expand to include local bistros, cafes and bakeries, as well as the coffee shops. They all serve good coffee. That will be the thread that links them. No Folgers, Maxwell House or Farmers for these places.
This morning my son and I went to Cafe Dolce for food and coffee. The cafe is a local restaurant. It was full, and people were chatting, studying, enjoying a meal. It is close enough to campus that it draws its students. It is also a good destination place for friends to visit. Our local mall also had a Cafe Dolce. They were started by local business owners.
Once upon a time there was a gas station on the site. When the cafe owners bought the gas station they tore it down and built the Cafe. It has an Italian feel to the decor. The ceiling is high and the stone floor makes for an echo. They have a wonderful patio, but in February the patio is closed. They patio is surrounded by my favorite plant-lavender. It lies dormant, but if I were to rub the leaves, they would still release their wonderful lavender odor. I plan to enjoy a meal on their patio when the lavender is blooming.
I eat there several times a year. It is a very popular Sunday spot. They like to use local products as much as possible. The coffee is roasted locally, the beer is brewed locally. I am old enough to realize how important local is.
In the early years of my marriage we would go back to western New York to visit my in laws. I loved to drive around the countryside, it was SO different from home. We sometimes took Amtrak. You could watch the countryside whiz by from the train car windows. As you passed through towns, you could get glimpses of their uniqueness. Sadly, more and more national chains began to dot the countryside. You see fewer and fewer local sites.
So this series has also stretched into a celebration of local uniqueness! I won’t be blogging about the local Starbucks. We do have them, but they are on the outskirts. A place for people to duck off of I-90 for their Starbucks fix. We once had a Starbucks on the main street of town. It closed. There were too many locally owned places, and they claimed the business. There has been a Starbucks in Barnes & Noble since Barnes & Noble opened. Again, I would bet most of their clientele are there for the books, and just add a coffee, so they can sit and read. That Starbucks is also becoming surrounded by local places.
By celebrating our local uniqueness, we celebrate our own individuality. Individuality can make life more disorderly. Madeleine L’Engle wrote a Newberry award winning book in the early 60’s titled A Wrinkle in Time. I have read that book through the years, and recently re-read it in anticipation of the movie’s release. There is a universe in that book, Camazotz, where sameness, order, syncopation are celebrated. It a world that one needs rescuing from. It is referred to as a dark world.
I try to celebrate the unique. I have another blog about my knitting. In my knitting, I try to never knit the same thing twice. If I use a pattern multiple times, there are changes to the pattern, different colors, different fibers.
Back to coffee. I will be visiting and reporting on another location soon. Enjoy your daily coffee or tea! Raising my cup to you….