Monthly Archives: February 2013

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“Live the dream, drink fresh milk!”

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GFD: The Yummy Shop, Shaldon.

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The Yummy Shop opened last summer, I was told by the woman who gave me the tea. It was her friends who opened it, and they offered her a job. I think it was Machiavelli who said ‘It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.’ Or was it the Government’s front bench…? First political jab of the day!

I sit here on one of two tables, in the corner of the room. To the right: my host, cleaning and telling me about old times. ‘Yes, we were overrun with kids in wetsuits, ice creams all over the place, high demand for the hampers…’ To the left, cream coloured aged furniture, shelves, drawers and dressers to hold olives teas, Teapigs, jams, chutneys, soups. Elsewhere we have the biscuits, crisps, eggs, more tea, more jam, more olives and ginger beer. I wont list it all, too much. For the Yummy Shop is schizophrenic: part café part shop.

My tea was £1. Coffee is also £1. But this is no pound shop, oh no. If you want to up the game a bit be prepared to splash out another 50p, for this is the price of the espresso, latte, cappuccino… Also on offer is hot chocolate, also £1, and milkshakes and ice cream.

Seems to be a good system, because the money you save on the drink leaves you thinking: perhaps I should invest in some unusual tea – get some Darjeeling Earl Grey or a few lemon n gingers. The Yummy Shop’s yummy offerings are at the good-quality end of the spectrum. No 60% horse tea here.

I get a £1.50 cappuccino for a second drink. The automatic coffee machine is new and has a bit of a temper. It makes a cappuccino in one swift motion at the touch of a button, in a matter of seconds. I’m personally keener on the non-automatic approach: the human input usually triumphs over the efficiency of the machine. Funny, they complain about foreigners ‘takin’ our jobs’ but stay quiet when machines do the same thing.

I sit here with my tea writing about Romans. Everybody knows about the romans, but did you know minus solum, quam cum solus esset? Indeed, but I am not alone. Only almost alone. We continue chatting until a woman enters and buys two bars of chocolate. Two!? They’re wild here, wild I tell ya!

by Adam

GFD: The Old Java Coffee House, Teignmouth

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No sooner had I arrived in Teignmouth than I found myself spinning like a record down the hill in my car. I swung into the curb and the wheel flicked right off. Hence I am stranded in Teignmouth and have resolved to get a job. As the great Schopenhauer may have put it: sometimes you crash.

I am now in this café which apparently opened last Saturday. The paint is still drying, as they say, and the staff still have the twinkle of novelty in their eyes. They chatter to one another and chatter to the coffee hounds of the room, as they clear tables and pour drinks. They like what they do and I like that, and they like that I like that. They also have booze if you fancy getting wrecked. But never drink alone, as they say, except Hemingway, who said: “It was pleasant to be drinking slowly and to be tasting the wine and to be drinking alone. A bottle of wine was good company.” So, do drink alone after all.

They have those chairs which look like they have long cream tongues as back rests. But I am on an armchair, happily enough. Armchairs suit my personality better I think.

I got a loyalty card which must mean than I am optimistic about the place. And I am. They have dark grey shirts in keeping with the pale decor of olive grey, wood and cream. The meds stop me drinking coffee, to avoid barmy insomniac crazed bouts of intense anxiety, but stranded as I am and out of pills, I go for an Americano. It arrives with a mini biscuit. The coffee is rich, not thick. It’s dark and lingers like a friend with nowhere to go.

It’s light and airy with a chandaleir, no less, hanging from the ceiling. Photography dots the walls, local pics of moors and bodies of water. The demographic is wide, ranging from grey haired wise old folk of yore to me, a mere child. That’s good I reckon. Also they have a notice board. A community thing. I’ll stick a Jam card on that noticeboard. I sit here writing the final chapter of a novel and proceed to steal their electricity to fuel my laptop. Oh Adam you swine.

Filter of the day? For that I shall return.

by Adam