Search for Stars Hollow: Catonsville, Maryland

Sometimes you think you know an area, driving the same routes and seeing the same buildings every time you return. Suddenly, one day a colleague mentions stopping for coffee at a new (to you) coffee shop rather than the cookie cutter Starbucks in what could be any random strip mall.

Catonsville sign

As we rounded a corner on Frederick Road, I caught a glimpse of what might be in store. If you blinked, you'd miss it, but there, off to the right, is a sign noting that you've just crossed into Catonsville, music city Maryland. Seriously? Yes. Evidently this small downtown area is home to four music shops, a summer concert series, and a monthly Appalachian bluegrass jam session. In honor of this tradition, I popped into Bill's Music and later went back to pick up a new ukulele (more on this later).

Bill's Music
ukes for sale

But let's get back to this coffee shop. I fell in love with Atwater's immediately upon crossing the threshold. I may have actually fallen for it when I saw the sign.

Atwater's sign
counter at Atwater's

I realize I'm easy to please, but using dry pasta to stir drinks seems borderline brilliant. We may want to bring these folks into the next set of peace talks.

drink stirrers
Duesenberg's

A quick check of the community calendar indicates a slew of community events, though nothing to rival Stars Hollow's 24-hour dance-a-thon. I've got a couple of community meetings I'm speaking at coming up in the local library. Cross your fingers for me that I don't run into a real life Taylor Doose.