It’s another Saturday mid-morning at Kushala Sip. What is it about a coffee-shop atmosphere that inspires the creative writing process? Is it the soft jazz? The ambient noise? The muffled conversations of patrons at other tables? I wasn’t purposely trying to listen but snippets of people talking would bubble to the surface every few minutes like foam in a latte.
I’ve overstayed my welcome but I couldn’t leave in the middle of the creative stream of consciousness that was pouring from my fingers into my keyboard. I arrived at the bistro too early for lunch so I settled on a chocolate croissant which the counter-person graciously warmed up for me in the small oven, just enough to melt the chocolate. My medium mocha coffee was the perfect accompaniment.
Coffee, chocolate and free wifi were just what I needed to get my creative juices flowing. I usually write my column from the comfort of my kitchen table, but sometimes it’s nice to take a break and see what a change of location does for inspiration.
I survey the interior of the coffee shop without being too noticeable. There are some single patrons with earphones on so they won’t disturb people near them, or to not be disturbed themselves by the din of other people’s conversations. The headphone wearers are intently focused on their screens, and I can’t help but wonder what they are looking at. Is the woman in the green sweater typing a newspaper article as well? The girl wearing the New England Patriot’s sweatshirt looks like she’s in the middle of a long distance romance. The clean-cut guy in the winter white sweater is obviously searching job sites to find a new career. He’s dressed like he could receive a call for an interview at any moment.
A large gathering of foreign speaking people are having what appears to be a family reunion at one of the bigger tables in the corner. I’m trying to decipher the language they are speaking. My guess is Chechen even though I don’t know what that sounds like. They are conversing over coffee and taking turns chasing two young children around the coffee shop. The children are fascinated by Kushala Sip’s Christmas tree display and the wrapped presents underneath it.
The couple sitting directly in front of me look deep in thought. On the surface, they may be taking a casual break from their holiday shopping. My guess is they are coming to terms with deep-rooted relationship issues. That’s what I get from watching too much Days Of Our Lives.
Seated at the window, a young couple is obviously planning a future event. Either a happy wedding or something sinister. That’s what I get for watching Dateline on Friday nights.
It is cold outside, 27 degrees, but it looks as bright as summer on Main Street. It’s warm in the coffee shop, warmer still from the sun pouring through the twelve paned windows. There’s an odd juxtaposition of the artificial Christmas tree standing next to the live plants on the window sill, all thriving. Outside, I have a view of the fire station, the church and the town common. There aren’t a lot of passers-by on foot, just lots of traffic as Saturday mid-morning spills into early afternoon.
I have definitely overstayed my welcome now that I look at the clock. I should have ordered another coffee, but the staff doesn’t seem to mind letting customers linger. The tables around me are cleaned as patrons come and go. I think I could continue to write here, at this butcher block table in the middle of this crowded cafe, from the time this place opens until the time they close. I should try that someday. A Kushala Sip writing marathon. If I sat here long enough I could finish writing my novel in a matter of months. But my coffee bill would be through the roof.
I’m happy I stopped in. The atmosphere is almost as good as my kitchen table. And the Kushala Sip specialty coffees taste a whole lot better than anything from my Keurig.