Thursday, November 17, 2011

Mumbai Mumbles: Coffee Shop- the perfect pit stop.

In the day when one literally runs to meet customers - in the vast city of Mumbai - in a rickety auto or a dusty cab, a much needed break is got in the form of visiting coffee shops.

I picked up this habit on a truncated work day in 2009.  I had so many things running in my head, that I packed up stuff from my office and drove around in the streets of Chennai.  I landed in this Coffee World, in Cenotaph Road, Alwarpet.   

The place is well laid out.  Spacious, nice air-conditioning.    Mild music that is non-intrusive.  Smiling lads form the coffee-crew.   Menu card is kept and the lad disappears into the background, wishing you good day.   I unpack.   There is a power point nearby;  I plug the laptop charger, and switch on the laptop.

 ‘There is wi-fi available, sir’ the lad interjects politely.  I say 'thanks, I have a datacard'.   I start work.   After sometime, I walk to the counter, and order an ice-tea and honey-waffles, my favorites.  

I get into my work, personal and official.  Some phone calls.  All like a nice work spot.   The guy polite serves the order on the table, smiles and leaves.   The work continues.  Time stands still - till the ice tea and the waffles disappear.

Another scenario - same place, another time.  I want to meet a person, well let us keep the trivia out.  We walk in, make ourselves comfortable in the cozy chair and place the order.   The guy and the music are non-intrusive and pleasant.   The air-conditioning is just perfect.   We talk and the order is served.   Time flies.  Finally, we leave.   Our job is done.  

Since my first discovery, Coffee Shops - Coffee World, Cafe Coffee day, Coffee Bean etc are my typical pitstops.  Between two customer calls.  In the middle of the work-day, when you don't want to be in office or home - the hiding closet.  A place to wait for somebody.   Time killer.   Rendezous spot.   As they say, a lot can happen over coffee.

In Mumbai,  it is more of about reaching a place early and work out the waiting period.  Like today, when I am waiting for somebody to join.   I can see my neighbouring seats - youngsters catching up  - taking pictures, apparently for Facebook, investment bankers meeting customers,  colleagues bitching about office life,  a loner like me immersed into a book - the common thing is the the ubiquitous coffee cup.

As I wait, my coffee is served.    And some time later, my friend walks in.   Coffee shop - a perfect pit stop.

- The One

Pic courtesy The One...


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