Down the street, around the corner, and approximately two minutes by car from my front door is my haven, my “Fortress of Solitude” if you will. It’s not a best friend’s home. It’s not the local mall. It’s my neighborhood Starbucks. I once spoke to the district manager for that particular location and she asked me, “Is this your Starbucks or are you just visiting?” I loved that, because they want folks to feel as though it’s “their” place. It’s their getaway, their haven. And that is exactly how I feel. I am considered a regular. I’ve spent many days and long hours patronizing their store while studying. I know the manager by name, as well as her baristas. We’ve celebrated the birth of her daughter last year, and this year we celebrated as three of her baristas had babies. They know me by name as well, and when I walk in they greet me and simply ask, “Grande Toffee Nut Pike with room?” Yes please!
Prior to even making it to the counter, I get numerous hugs from other regulars or “SBers” who meet up nearly each day, even if only for a short time. We sit down, maybe catch a game of Tri-Ominos, catch up on some quick “How are things with you?” chit-chat, discuss the latest books we’re reading, ask if “so-and-so” has been in lately, and before leaving to go about our day, we plan our next “random” run-in. It is a ritual only true SBers really understand and appreciate.
My husband is not only NOT an SBer but he is not a coffee drinker. I take great joy in that fact. At first I couldn’t believe he didn’t drink coffee. What?! Who on Earth doesn’t drink coffee right? Not so. As it turns out there are many who do not share a love of the dark bean. My husband is one such individual. And for that, I am happy because I do believe that if he developed a fondness for coffee and felt the need to frequent my SB, it would surely be akin to him breaching my inner sanctum. As a mom and a wife, there’s not much left that is mine and only mine, but down the corner and around the bend I have found such a place. And for about $2.20 I can find nice friends, good conversation, great coffee, and a place to call my own. At least until the coffee runs out.