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People-watching: A case study, coffee shop edition

People watching

Everyone loves to people-watch whether they will admit it or not. Personally, I get quite a kick out of it. Time after time I catch myself while waiting in random lines just checking out the people and the world around me. In fact, that’s what I am doing right now; sitting in a Starbucks, facing the beautiful buildings and the hustle and bustle of my downtown.

I’ve only been sitting here for about six minutes with my coffee in hand and I’ve already seen such an incredible range of human emotion. When you are people-watching, you can see the peculiar way people still somehow think they are isolated and alone, even within extremely large crowds. In some people you can see it in their eyes, in others you can see it in how they walk, how they present themselves to the world around them.

Right now, this about four-year-old girl is chasing a bird down the street. She is weaving in and out of people on the street like her feet are on fire. The sheer happiness I can see in her face is something you can’t duplicate. Children always have this honest and sincere way of seeing the world. Unfortunately, most children lose that honest perception of the world by the time they hit grade school.

I can also see a group of well-dressed business men and women huddled at the door of a Mongolie Grill Restaurant across the way. They have been blocking the door for quite a while. You think one of them would have prompted the group to take a few steps over by now? One of the women must have thought it was warmer than it actually is because she is struggling in this cold Alberta winter we are having.

That being said, my mocha is starting to get cold now. One thing I can’t stand is cold coffee, especially on a chilly winter day. I’m definitely not the only one that retreated to this comforting little coffee shop either. This is a popular place for book worms, writers, students and many more. I am surrounded by your cookie cutter downtown socialists, as well as a few students cramming for their upcoming midterm exams, which I can only assume by the frantic look on their faces, paired with copious amount of coffee consumption. I can also hear a couple behind me discussing their current living situation. My ears have perked up and I can tell she isn’t happy about moving in with this guy. The tone in her voice is cold and uninterested, yet it sounds like it’s the only option she has. Once she gets a tea, they quickly hustle out of the shop, on their way to start packing.

It has started snowing a bit now and there is nothing I love more then fluffy white snow falling from the sky with a gorgeous downtown skyline in the background. That being said, sometimes you have to take a step back and embrace the world around you; seeing everything you can and learning new things about people you don’t know. Unplugging from the electronic world to become in touch with what is going on around you. You’d be surprised how refreshing it is, sitting and watching in a little coffee shop on the corner of your city or town.

Try it, I dare you.

About the Author

Keenyn Bijou

Keenyn graduated from NAIT Business School where she majored in Marketing and Advertising. She enjoys sports, photography, and writing. She hopes to make a positive impact in a company through her expertise and ethics.