Ever had that experience where you know what you want and you find variations of it, but they are never quite right?  Too hot, too cold, too big, too small, too loud, too quiet, too many people, too few people….just too, too, too!  It’s like living in the Goldilocks and the Three Bears story (minus the fact that she was trespassing, causing property damage, and stealing food). Everything you try is close but no cigar.  I’ve been having that problem for a couple of years now off and on.  First it was finding a place that had good food and good beer where I could write in peace.  Finally found that, and actually discovered a few so I’m not just haunting on particular bar like a Cheers reenactment.  It’s not always good when everyone knows your name.  It kinda depends on what has caused them to remember it.  :/  Then it was finding a good spot to write outside because I don’t always want food and beer (What?) and sometimes I need the quiet and inspiration of the outdoors.  *sigh*  So finally found a couple of those.  Yay!

But the quest was still on for a space that would combine the two.  I mean, sometimes you want the quiet outdoors, but also coffee, sometimes lunch, every once in a while a libation might be good, and sometimes an upright chair vs the lawn or a bench…I likes my variety and don’t like to be restricted.  Don’t judge!  I’m a writer.  I get to be contrary and awkward.  So yesterday, as I was running through my head, AGAIN, what my options were, the closest thing being a brewery/winery with a campus that includes a golf course which is nice but a long way away and not quite what I’m looking for, and a park which has none of the food or beverage options, the word campus stuck in my head.  And, I kid you not, I heard the switch flip that turned on my light bulb over my head.  Campus—-college campus.  A place with park like outdoor spaces, plenty of spaces to sit, where caffeine is dispensed liberally, where people are expected to be working on laptops feverishly and perched reading on anything approximating a flat, unmoving surface and sometimes unmoving is optional.   That’s it!  Eureka!

Having figured out what I was looking for I had an embarrassment of choice, my area having a number of such establishments.  So I picked one, based on closeness to home, to the library where I have books on hold, and to a food store where I need to get some things, and then set out to utilize the abundance of facilities.  It’s funny to be back on campus after so many years and yet feels very familiar.  I got coffee from the campus shop where the barista apologized for not having decaf.  Why would they? What was I thinking? The library actually has couch areas sectioned off where you can kick off your shoes and stretch out, there are plenty of benches outside, and the only real issue was that they had watered the lawns recently and thoroughly so instead of being lush they were squishy.  Not a huge setback.

The moral of the story: if you make what you want a priority and you’re persistent in looking for it, you’ll either finally find it, figure out the issue, or make it yourself.  Or if you’re living through the Wizard of OZ instead then you’ll probably find it in your own back yard.