A tale of two coffee shops

BY: Virginia Scheid-Young

It was my first semester at Millersville University. In addition to finding my way around an entirely new campus and readjusting to a new school, it was my goal to locate a good coffee shop. In fact, that was my top priority. On my drive into campus I went right by George St. Café. “Well,” I thought, “this should work out quite nicely.” I investigated the Café between classes one day.
It was here that I made my first mistake. I ordered a chai latte – deviating from the standard coffee. It was the most disgusting thing I have ever tried to drink. Generally, after paying several dollars, I will at least drink the beverage, even if it is not to my liking. This is one of the only times I can remember actually throwing away a latte. I was horrified, and determined to avoid George St. thereafter.
All my coffee dreams went up in smoke. Where else was there to get coffee and study? Luckily, I vented my frustrations to the single solitary soul I knew on campus. I still remember him saying, “Oh, Virginia…. I’m sorry…. You need to go to Javateas.” Wait? What? There was another coffee shop? Yes, he told me, there was another coffee shop!
So we went to Javateas. It had really cool tabletops with coffee bean patterns. Over the course of that first semester, I would visit Javateas on occasion. As a commuter student in need of a place to study between classes, I initially frequented the postage stamp-sized café often. They had acceptable coffee, good lattes and food, and free WiFi.
I quickly learned not to go there twice in one day, however, as the expression on the face of whoever was working inevitably communicated they thought you must be a loser for showing up more than once. In fact, that was the biggest downside to Javateas – the staff. I can only recall one girl who worked there who was actually cheerful. She was incredibly sweet, and would sing softly along with the radio while she worked. She had a very pleasant voice to listen to. Everyone else working there that semester always seemed to be suffering from a malady that rendered them incapable of being even remotely friendly.
I went there one day to study and drink coffee over a forty-five minute break. Now, Javateas really is the size of a postage stamp. So, after getting my coffee from the grump behind the counter, I settled down to the books. The entire forty-five minutes I was there, I was forced to listen to the owner complain to the grump about another employee. It was very awkward. I kept thinking that surely the mantra would end. She had not said anything new about the mystery employee. No, she was still on the subject when I left. I went to Javateas very little after that and when I would return, I just went in, got my coffee, and left. I languished through that first semester, desperate for some good coffee.
With the beginning of my second semester at Millersville, I finally caved. I had an 8:00 A.M. class and found it completely impossible to function that early without coffee. (I am, by nature, a night owl.) I began to stop at George St. on my way to class. Ah… those cups of coffee first thing in the morning! As my friend and I had developed the habit of referring to George St. as “the enemy,” I felt like I had a guilty pleasure. I didn’t care. George St. had THE best coffee I had ever tasted. In fact, to this day, their espresso blend is my ultimate favorite. I spent my second semester blissfully enjoying my George St. coffees.
One day, after school had finished and summer had officially begun, I was hanging out with my friend. In a slightly confessional manner he admitted to having patronized George St. Café all the time over the last semester. “No kidding!” I responded, “Me too!” We had a good laugh when we realized we had both switched coffee shop loyalties to the heretofore “enemy”.
Now, many semesters later, I visit Javateas on occasion. However, George St. Café will always hold a special place for me.
They have the best coffee I have ever tasted (and I have tried many coffees) and the food is quite tasty. I like to study at George Street. They have free WiFi – always an important factor when I rate a coffee shop. They do accept debit cards, but only with a $5 minimum purchase. While I have never used it myself, they do claim to accept Marauder Gold.
If you have never gone to the George St. Café, you must! If you drink coffee, it will change your world.