Spilling beans- SnobStarbucks

Saturday, January 04, 2014

Having lived in the city since birth, I've considered it my birthright, almost like breathing, this place belongs to me. The shade under the trees, inviting roads infested with traffic and narrow sidewalk included, this is all mine. However, this belonging is as much of a reality as my relatives being mind. I bump into them, display horror infront of my parents, try to run out of the situation and invariably fall down. Feign interest when they tell me about how big a brat I was as a kid, force a feeble smile about the time I threw a fit and demanded a flute at 1 am and let out a laugh when they tell me about how greedy I was with dinners at their place (though I Refuse to buy this one considering the picky eater I am). My relationship with the city is the same. I hop on the places, brimming with enthusiasm and step back as soon as I reach there. Something's a buzzkill. Maybe, it fails to connect to me or just that I can't fake enthusiasm anymore as I am turning older and more cynical. 

In the midst of such terrible darkness, I found my truce with Epicuria. The food court conveniently located under a metro station, closest from my college and residence. 

There is something about that Starbucks outlet that draws me to it. Each time I'm there, I come back with fond memories, even if it's about their music selection. It's the air, the vibe in the place that can brighten any dull day. Had a row at work? I assure you, you'll feel better by visiting that place and getting yourself a Toffee Praline Mocha. Smooth bass jazz with the smell of caffeine in air and the right amount of sugar, mixed with lingering fragrance of Burberry and sometimes, Chanel. Though, I'm sure this will be manifested with perspiration in months to come, but until then I'm dreaming of costing my hands by curling it around the mug of hot chocolate. 

Then again, there are regulars, who I regularly bump into, and not acknowledge. The Tintin lookalike! A handful of Korean businessmen, milfs (as Citizen Fuzz would label), a European traveller with a book, a really creepy looking old man and some yuppy occupying the best seat in the house with his obnoxious  blonde girlfriend (go home woman, get a manicure done or something). It's the familiarity in the faces of the unknown that gives me the comfort of being in a city where I've the option of getting lost or found. It's this feeling that you seek when you claim you want to escape the city life for a bit and hit a town completely unknown. A place where you're forced to talk for work, to make new friends and to get acquainted and do this from the top. A revival, second beginning, the factor of chance- of crossing on known and meeting the unknown. This is what Citizen Fuzz and I had in mind when we discussed about getting to a different city for a 'change of scene'. Mostly, it's due to the inadequacies we seem to find and let ourselves affect by, In others, that we solicit a change as big as changing the city, country for a few days or forever. It's always to seek what others lack, to get a better deal and to smell better scents. Maybe, this is why I always end up bringing new company with me at Epicuria. It's always to experience the unknown at a location, which is now fully mine, inspite of winding up at the stone steps leading to the world outside. 

 Sometimes, it's not the coffee and the warmth. It's the chicken and fortune cookie that I indulge in, from the food court, when I'm rich enough to fill myself. Mostly, though, it's about sitting next to a glass window with sunlight tearing through, partially on my face with a confidante, who can keep this place a well kept secret. While I consume 330 calories and a dose of dopamine, I'm completely aware that this may turn into the next hipster spot, or just shut down tomorrow. I will have known that you can fall in love with your own conception of cinematic city. Just bring the necessary characters and  manage your mis-en-scene and I promise, it will be the best three hours and 300 bucks ever spent. 

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