Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Coffee Shop Talk

Natalie went to the Edinburgh library to get some work done, and it being a highly respected institution, the keepers of its doors would not let me in, though I suggested to Natalie that perhaps they would be more lenient if I told them I was a "budding author." Whilst Nat searched the many tomes for specific sources, I crossed the street to the Elephant House, most famous for inspiring authors, most notably J.K. Rowling who wrote large portions of her early work in the backroom overlooking Edinburgh Castle.

It was a very hot and bright day, and the Elephant House was even hotter, and I did not stay. (Even if it hadn't been warm, I would have found sitting down and writing too pretentious to feel good about it.) I walked to the nearest Starbucks and bought an iced chai latte and later went for a walk in the park.

I have always had a great many good experiences in coffee shops. People are interesting, and you can easily find this out, given that you are brave enough to speak with them. In Cafe Nero, I sat down at the table next to a woman drinking cappuccino, and we struck up a conversation. Her name was Yolande Jasmine and she works for St. Mary's and she recommended that I go see the Royal Botanical Gardens. She was named after her Aunt Violet, as Yolande means 'violet' in French. Yolande's mother felt it was a bit like a puzzle, a fun secret, understood only by those who looked deeper into the name.

As it is, I now have a loyalty card to Cafe Nero's with two stamps on it. I would be happy to pass it on to the person who will be visiting Britain in the near future. Even if you do not manage to fill it up, you could in turn send it on to someone else who could enjoy a coffee "absolutely free." Just let me know and I will be sure to send it by mail as soon as possible.

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