If you know me in real life or if you’ve followed me on social media long enough, you’d know that I love (understatement) coffee. And while I can always just brew my own cup at home or at the office, there are still a lot of times when I want to hang out at various coffee shops. Here are some of my reasons why.
1. I go there when everything seems just too much. Don’t get me wrong, I love my life now, but there are just days and moments when you just need to get away and be alone and be anonymous and just be somwhere other than there. When I need to work, I bring along my trusty laptop. When I don’t need to work, I just bring a book or a notebook and pen. I sometimes don’t tell anyone where I’m going just so no one will bug me. Or sometimes, I just tell them because I know that after an hour or so, I will crave their company. Maybe.
2. I go there when I want to people watch. The people who go to coffee shops are pretty interesting. There are those who devour frapuccinos like there’s no tomorrow. There are the beautiful people who parade in and out like stars in a music video about coffee. There are the ones who crave solitude ironically, in a public place, but in a corner with their books and/or phones. There are those who meet up with long lost friends over coffee cups and pastries. There are the workaholics who can’t seem to let go of their laptops. And yes, I am sometimes all of those. Well, except for the frapuccinos (I rarely drink them) and being one of the beautiful people.
3. I go there when I want a good cup of coffee. I’m sorry, but I truly believe that instant coffee is not real coffee. Nothing beats good ole brewed coffee. The smell, the texture, the scalding hotness as it goes down my throat, and the eventual jolt as it enters my system. Those are things that instant coffee (no matter how “now” it is) can never give me. And yes, sometimes I do give in to the inevitable iced drinks and frapuccinos and flavored coffee, but brewed coffee is still my main thing. Some of my favorite coffees are:
Vietnamese Coffee and Barako from everywhere!
Toby’s Estates - Gibraltar and Mocha
Bo’s - Drip or french press of Sagada, Matutum, etc
Starbucks - cold brew goodness
Commune - everything
4. I go there when I want to meet up with long lost friends, or even everyday friends. It is quiet enough that you can hear each other talk, unlike if you meet up in a mall or that thing called a bar, which will never ever be conducive to intimate declarations. Just please, observe common decency by not making the coffee shop a market place coz you know, some people still go there to think and have me time.
5. Most coffeeshops offer free wifi and for someone who breathes online, this is always a good thing.
6. Coffee + aircon + wifi + headphones = conducive to writing
7. Most coffeeshops have really good pastries to satisfy my always sweet tooth and sometimes even more than decent food to tide me over.
8. A lot of my best ideas have come from just sitting in coffeeshops, staring blankly into space and waiting for eureka moments. Granted, not all of these ideas have borne fruit, but someday, that idea notebook will come in handy.
9. Coffeeshops always smell good. Period.
10. And yes, the dream is to one day have my own coffee shop/library, where people can do all the things I mentioned above. I also want to have a “quiet area” where those craving solitude and need to concentrate will not be disturbed by those who want to socialize. So while that is still in the pipeline (maybe), I will continue to make the rounds of all the coffee shops in Manila and fortify that idea in my head.