I have always considered myself a very outgoing person. I love for the most part talking to people. I say the most part as even social butterflies as myself need to retreat and recharge from time to time. So back to me being a super nice, friendly dude. I am! I've been hitting this new coffee spot for me called Coffee 8 Purveyors. It has the right balance of coffee shop warmth and plain seating with sterile, blank white walls. Your hipster hangout if you will. But I've noticed that the younger costumers than myself hardly if ever lift their gazed before and after they have ordered their coffee. Afraid to engage, they huddle behind apple lap tops and trendy glasses to a world of online engagement. But being the ripe age of 45, ouch, I'm over any social awkwardness. But when did saying hello, extending that into a dialogue become awkward? I mean, come on. we are people here! Stop being cool and self-knowing and just be.
These millennials are scared pip squeaks when it come eye contact, full vocal engagement. So when I sat down this morning for a vanilla latte at the front counter I meet this sweet people from Portland. They were past their 20's, I wanna say mid 30s? And they were here for an Acro Yoga workshop. Ok, cool, I have no idea what that is, but that's what meeting new folks is all about, To learn something new, all anyone has to do was listen She spoke more then the dude, more outgoing. They wanted to see Austin so we started talking about all their is to do in this small town. From food spots, live music hangouts to hill country jaunts, I was quickly reminded why I still love this town. Austin, for it being a boomtown, has so much to offer.
Great music and the Continental, Mexican food at Polvo's, hike and bike trails right in the heart of downtown! I could do all those activities in one day and still have hours to spare. Ok so back to the art of engagement, which is really a lost art at this pint. There was a woman by herself at the counter, chatting away with her Sister who was also our barista behind the counter. So I asked this woman, what places are a must see, must eat, in Austin? And boy did she enegage and was full of fun information. I love bringing complete strangers together on a conversation over coffee, vibrant living!
Now there wasn't any social or political talk just a human connection over food, activities and music. I will add that once the chatty girl, I didn't get her name, my bad. Once she heard that they were from Portland she screamed, "That'e where I got engaged!" Showing off her ring and a huge smile. What a shining moment. I wish more moments could happen at coffee spots like these. No matter if they come hungover, late for work or working from the very spot they are sitting in, people must engage more, hell even a little bit. We have become masters of the deflect, of walking with eyes locked on phones and hiding behind invisible walls of social disengagement.
I think I may go to a different coffee spot a week and begin random chats with complete strangers. Cause you never know when a stranger can save you life. See you on down the road.