Dreaming. On a road trip, mid-afternoon. I stopped over in a town off of a highway somewhere between the Bay and Portland in what was described to me by folks online somewhere as a hippie town. Some former harbor and fishing village, it was a fairly regular little town until I spotted the tea shop. Via some sort of dash, voice-activated computer, a villainous tea-monger urged me to stop for tea and not coffee - I did.

The tea shop was a small, ramshackle building with faded letters. Inside, the floor was all tile - it was a calm, warm place clearly beloved by many hippies. There was a large, quietly enthusiastic line at the baker's case, and I joined it. A few of the friendly townsfolk encouraged me to pick up baked goods. "Tea orange cookies!" someone suggested. "Really good!" said another. Someone pulled out a brochure - it turns out the cookies were a cultural legacy of the town, which claimed to have been founded by Japanese and Ethiopian immigrants sometime during the 19th century.

Someone else recommended some sort of puerh blend that was excellent. I was quite contentedly munching on cookies as someone else offered an awesome shoulder massage.

"Here, you've got to try this, too!" someone else cried. My bill was settled, and as the dream ended, I contentedly ambled out onto the boardwalk, sack of cookies in one hand, tea in the other.

Wow, I said to myself. I'm going to have to stop over here more often.

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