I Envy Old Men on Turl Street.

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Aug 24 2021

Gold Tape

Dear Reader,

In my Oxford student days, doing work in cafes was still ‘an American thing’. I phrase it that way — “I’m going to do work in a cafe” — because when I said “I’m working in a cafe” people thought I was a part-time barista.

There were limited cafe options back then, even in the city centre. In a typical Turl Street cafe (where my college, Exeter, is based), I’d pore over library books, while a table over, an old man read the newspaper. I remember thinking, that is the life. One day, I will dedicate entire mornings to reading the paper over a cup of coffee.

Since leaving social media, I replaced the constant stream of anxiety-inducing digital headlines with print publications. My favourite magazines and newspapers accumulate until my vintage holder is stuffed to the brim. I panic to get through the stack before more arrive. Until… I remembered my dream of being an old man on Turl Street. I cleared my Sunday morning agenda, and dedicated it to reading my good ol’ fashioned print media.

Until the Next Chapter,

Xandra

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