Rhosanna
Illustration
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Cafes, I love you. Like, a lot.

 
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There are lots of reasons why I love going to cafes, get excited when I see a new one or long for one when they're lacking. Not for the most obvious reasons though (coffee & cake). These are pretty valid, but not really mine. Because I'm pretty sure I'm a little intolerant to gluten therefore the cake option is usually limited, and the coffee I'd like most is usually above my budget, and has too much milk in it (I'm cutting down on dairy-yes I'm one of those people). 

I have explored many, maybe even most of the cafe's in Swansea, this is one of my favourites. 

If you're not bored and want to know my extremely thought through reasons for loving cafes, keep reading. If not, don't worry I honestly won't be offended, and well, I won't actually know. 

Here it goes:

1. Cafe's are warm, usually (Waterstones definitely get's a little chilly but has blankets, so it's all good) For the cost of a coffee, I can work in the warmth. As a recently graduated illustrator, attempting to freelance full-time, having the heating on all day in the flat isn't really an option. It would mean heating the flat, pretty much all day and then, what if we want heat in the evening too? It's not practical, and i'll be honest, sitting at my desk with a hat and scarf can only last so long. I have to get out or I start to hibernate. (Yes, a little dramatic) My bedroom is my office, it's a big room (basically two rooms in one) so, I'm very lucky to even have space for an office. BUT, sometimes, the cafe is my office. It makes me feel like I'm working in a studio, kind of, except people are reading or just chatting and I have to stop myself listening (which is actually kind of difficult, because people just spill all, in the comfort of a cafe-hardly any discretion). 

2. It gives me a reason to get dressed. Honestly, I need that. Not only to get dressed, but to maybe have a shower, and get excited about what to wear. Without this, it's perfectly possible to to work all day, illustrating, in my joggers. I don't really own proper pjs, just comfortable joggers that have become my pjs. And everyone knows you shouldn't work in your pjs...so I'm in joggers, which I sometimes wear to bed. Not the same as pjs, therefore acceptable to do work from home in. Except, when it's cold and I'm in my joggers...the urge to get back into bed, to convince myself that I'm overtired, or a little ill and in need of a nap. That urge is too strong and it's not till 4pm that I get my act together and then spend the evening berating myself for my laziness...promising to be up at 7, with Matt the next day. So, planning to go to a cafe, to work, where other humans with eyes will be, well, I get dressed. 

3. There are people, to watch, to smile at, to listen to ... or at the very least, to see. Working in isolation can make you miss this. Working in a cafe, I stare, I wander, and waste a little time but, eventually, I feel guilty taking up space to use the Wifi for Facebook, so I swing into action and get to work! Full speed and concentration. Sometimes I stay all day, by doing this, I often see the same people, sitting, reading, working, chatting with friends - and it starts to feel really familiar! I like it. I often wander if people are intrigued or if they acknowledge me, like I acknowledge them. Maybe they wander what I'm doing. Maybe they don't even register my existence. But the very thought that maybe they do, under the impression that perhaps I'm being watched, just like I watch them-I work, hard! 

Balance is key. Something I'm try to figure out in all areas of my life. Cafe's bring a little balance. Working from home, I get time alone - working in a cafe, I get a sense of community. Perfect.

 
Rhosanna Lowe