In the right place at the right time…

Coffeeshops ??????? part networking, part addiction, and not just to caffeine. What is it really? The addiction to the solitude of plugging in your laptop, sipping a chai or macchiato, nibbling a scone and interacting with yourself. The perfect place to hone your ability to write in peace and be productive while being totally distracted.

I went to Starbuck????????s late yesterday afternoon for a meeting. I had planned on getting their earlier but, having a four year old, that doesn????????t always figure into the equation. Instead I arrived on time after having gotten a call from the person I was to meet saying she????????d gotten there early (she doesn????????t have kids) and was waiting outside because it was packed. The packed part came as no shock. Starbuck????????s is the home away from home for so many of us at times. The fact that any place would allow you to partially ???????move in??????? as you unpack all your gear in their shop is always a plus. Goes along with being able to sit on the floor in the aisle of your local Barnes & Noble.

After the meeting, which went well, I decided to go inside and snag one of the three highly coveted, overstuffed comfy chairs in the corner and take up residence for a couple hours of writing. I set up, went to the counter and bought my tall Vanilla latte, eyed the butterfly cookies. I decided my sweet tooth was partially dormant for once so I behaved and, drink in hand, returned to my little nesting area and began to write. Mid-sentence I ran into a friend I????????d not seen in a while, a regular at the local Improv show. We chatted pleasantly a few minutes, discussed her new show she was rehearsing for at Civic Theatre, promised to catch up, exchanged current info and hugged our miss you????????s and goodbyes.

It????????s funny. At home if I am interrupted while I am working I have a hard time getting my focus back. There, in the middle of one of the most active places in the city, I have no problem at all. Is it because I know how to drown it all out? Or is it that I expect to be interrupted so I????????m more flexible. I think it is a little of both.

I settled back in and started writing again. A young woman, with a smile that instantly warms you and draws you in, came over to a table nearby and joined into a conversation about the Trans-Siberian Orchestra (how we couldn????????t believe that someone had never heard of them) without missing a beat. She immediately made me feel comfortable, like I had known her all my life and just hadn????????t seen her in a long time. I heard her mention to a friend that she????????d gotten into doing Mary Kay and I waited expecting the normal sales pitch. I was pleasantly surprised and scolded myself for being so negative as we both sat quietly working at our laptops after the music discussion and laughter had subsided, TSO????????s music still playing in our heads.

You know me, I????????m a ???????motor-mouth??????? and have never been one to let the opportunity to meet someone pass. It????????s how I am, how I network, how I make friends. I struck up a conversation on ??????? I don????????t even remember now on what ??????? and we happily talked for about two hours. As it turns out she is very much a kindred spirit, another artist and someone I have already begun to play muse to as she needs more outlets for her work. She has some amazing black & white contrast pieces that I am hoping to help her get out around town more and online. She and I both enjoy being creative and working with all kinds of media though primarily pen and ink. Neither one of us is afraid of art and like to dig in and get our hands dirty.

An acquaintance of hers came in and she introduced me. After another hour????????s worth of banter between the three of us I wrote down my information for the two of them, we all ended up exchanging numbers, and then finally had to say my goodbyes. She stood and hugged me which, by this time, I had expectedly welcomed and we made promises to get together after our hectic weeks.

Every once in a while, being in the right place at the right time rewards me with a new lifelong friend.

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