Saturday, July 24, 2010

Urban Blend

I arrive at my hotel in Oakland too early to check in. But there's wifi in the lobby and Yelp finds me a few nearby coffee shops. Urban Blend looks interesting - it's in an old gas station.

It's definitely not a tourist place, even though the fancy shops are only a few blocks away. The counters are rough and a coat of paint wouldn't hurt. But the coffee is good and I snag a comfortable old couch.

The guy working behind the counter speaks Spanish to many of the regulars. He seems like a good guy. A young girl orders a drink and then can't pay (they don't take debit). He lets her go. She says she'll come back and pay, but I wonder. Two other guys come in and talk him into giving them free coffee. One of them cleans the tables in return.

I leave a generous tip. Obviously, I can afford it more than the other customers. I'll come back here if I get a chance - I like the feel of the place. It reminds me a little of Mexico.

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