Earlier this morning, I spent an hour with a friend of mine at a locally-owned coffee shop. Warm, comfortable and organic are three words I'd use to describe the place. We had a good talk and I had a wonderful breve. It was good to catch up with him, and I can't help but think the location is part of the reason.
You see, I'm sitting at a corporate coffeehouse right now, and it's far less organic and far more clinical. There's no hodge-podge of furniture or unusual lighting. Even the less corporate coffeehouses have a hard time emulating the feel of my local coffee joint. While the coffee is important, it may be equally as, if not more important to make sure unique characteristics of individual locations can stand out.
Kind of like people...not each one is going to be the same. And, while we all hope for some consistency, it's the unique characteristics of each person that gives them their unique flavor. This isn't some "Life is like a box of chocolates" thing. But simply a recognition that most all of us want to get to the same destination...the differences lie in how we anticipate getting there.