Since I was a small boy, I craved dreary weather, warm scarves, and a good excuse to leave Texas. I’ve always imagined walking along a sidewalk covered with red and orange leaves that trailed towards a local coffee shop filled with various kinds of books and intriguing people. Apartments stand close behind militant-like trees. Along my walk, a veil of small rain-drops covers my old and worn newsboy hat and tweed jacket.
Because of the rain, the road’s blackness appears all the more beautiful and engulfing; the yellow lane dividers lie boldly with great recognition. The cars parked along the road become more announced. This particular road, where the coffee shop and further down my apartment resides, is narrow. Seeing small cars driving through often very slowly, regarding the elders who are typically out walking, is our usual.
Finally arriving, smelling coffee beans, and seeing familiar faces, the coffee shop becomes a haven — our second living room. The coffee shop is warmed with subtle candlelight, natural light, and lamps. Couches are layered with blankets, positioned, and repositioned everywhere. You can have dinner, coffee, or a drink while reading or spending time with old and new friends.
I typically sit near a window with my latte, writing, pondering the things of life, and observing the world unfolding right before me. The misty rain continues coating the windows; empty cups pile up on my table, and after a few hours of writing, I’m in pursuit of dialogue. You won’t lock eyes with another without an acknowledging head-nod or a genuine smile back. You’ll meet unfiltered good-hearted people here —rarely are there any unsocial beings.
A few of us began to gather near the couches with warm blankets. Conversations sparked, hours would pass, and I’d slowly retract. I’d reflect on how I deeply desired to befriend genuine artists, writers, photographers, dancers, and performers just a few months ago. And here we are, learning the depths of one another, enjoying the simplicity of dialogue in our second living room.