Pic: Freedigitalphotos.net

Coffee and I have been best buddies for as long as I can remember. During my childhood in India, there was only coffee of the instant kind. Mix with milk and drink. I got exposed to the real coffee or the taste of freshly brewed coffee only when I came to live in the US. Starbucks was the place for my daily Java. Cappuccinos, lattes or espressos — I liked them all.  The cookies especially the dark chocolate with chocolate chips was sinful and just perfect. But what made the experience extraordinary was the ambience of Starbucks. It just makes you feel warm and welcome. Long drawn conversations over a piping hot or cold cuppa was among the most satisfactory experiences of life. I thought I had left that behind when I relocated to India many years back.

But, I had a pleasant surprise when Starbucks opened their doors in India. A couple of years back, I planned to meet up a few of my college batchmates from my MBA days. I was traveling to Mumbai and was on a short vacation. Married and with our own families now, the close buddies that we were, we all had drifted apart. This was a meetup I was really looking forward to. And we decided to refresh the memories of those college days at a much-loved haunt. We gathered at Starbucks at  an upscale mall in suburban Mumbai. The warm and squishy sofas were inviting. The pleasant chatter of people engrossed in conversations was the perfect setting for a long-delayed get together. I had arrived a little ahead of time and took up my place on one of the sofas. As I waited for the old gang to turn up, I soaked in the ambience. The music playing was soft, keeping the mind alive yet not overpowering enough to drown out the conversation.

The friendly staff is always on their toes to help out with a friendly smile and a warm suggestion but never intrusive. I took out my smartphone and used the free wi-fi to login and connect. While I browsed the net, a couple of friends turned up. We ordered our coffees along with some savories to eat. Then time took another dimension, and we were teleported back to our college canteen, a bunch of boisterous youngsters, sharing in the fun.  As we pulled each other’s legs, laughed and went crazy, we were not a gang of grownups but youngsters once more.

The conversations flowed. The delicious coffee kept us company, and we hung around till the gray of the evening transformed into an inky black sky. No one came and bothered us though the last orders had long ago been placed. We hung around till the dinner time was well past us. Then with heavy hearts, we bid goodbye to each other, promising to stay in touch, of calling more often though we all know that life somehow just takes another direction.

With a warm glow of memories past and fresh, I headed home. Starbucks providing the perfect place where for once we met over coffee instead of a social media poke or status update. Nothing beats the happiness that surrounds a face-to-face meeting. Nothing beats the time spent with old friends. This is #HowWeMet, a bunch of middle-aged friends from college.

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20 Thoughts on “When old friends meet: #HowWeMet at Starbucks

  1. First one for the first time on your blog….yayyy!!! Never a coffee drinker but always loved the aroma of coffee 🙂
    These days, I started drinking coffee, but I have a peculiar way I love it. With lots of milk and sugar and some coffee too. And starbucks and friendships carry long stories…Many bachelors/unemployed/students hang out there for hours together for free internet and peace of mind and……:)

    • Wow! Now that is truly a first. 🙂 How can you not like coffee?? I have developed a taste for brewed coffee, not black coffee though. Yes, the free internet is a huge draw and also the fact that no one bothers you. I love cafes.

  2. When we’re meeting old friends after a long time, we just don’t want to be disturbed and made aware of the nitty-gritty of the surroundings, right? We just want the world to let us be, for those precious few moments..And I guess Starbucks provided the perfect environment for a perfect evening!

  3. Rachnaaaaa next time we will meet at Starbucks…It’s in the same building as Fenny’s 🙂

  4. I love spending my afternoons in a cozy coffee shop.
    Back in Bangalore – there were quite a few favorite hangouts and CCD.

    Here – its Starbucks – I have spent pleasant hours in the company ofdelicious coffee and a book 🙂
    I’m really glad there are a few Starbucks cafes all within walking distance of my home here.

  5. What better place than Starbucks to catch up with old friends and relive each moment, Rachna:)

  6. There’s nothing like meeting old friends over a cup of coffee at a warm and an inviting place! And that reminds me that we must meet soon, too! 🙂

  7. Ahh ! The smell of coffee binds friendships even stronger 🙂

  8. Ah, coffee …..and friends or someone you really like. It’s an awesome combination 🙂

  9. Ah, the smell of freshly revived memories over a steaming cuppa. Well told, Rachna. Although, can I be honest? I have never enjoyed coffee. Tea is my poison. But I can completely relate to laughing and reliving happiness in a coffee shop.

    • I enjoy tea as well but coffee is in another league. I have a soft spot for filter coffee too. Meetup with friends over coffee is just out if the world. Thanks for reading!

Do not leave without commenting. I love a good conversation :).

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