The Starbucks Phenomenon: entering a franchised, merchandised, advertised, serialized establishment anywhere in the world with the full guarantee of an identical experience in each location. I am probably in the minority here, but I am thankful that from Tokyo to Aberdeen, Deptford, NJ to Dunwoody, GA, all Starbucks are the same. Today I took the afternoon off, went into town to my Aberdeen Starbucks, ordered my very favorite eggnog latte, and knitted for a blissful hour to the strains of Johnny Mathis Christmas tunes in the background. The cups were holiday red, the drinks were frothy and warm, if overpriced, and when I closed my eyes and ignored the barista saying, "Eat in or take away?" I could have been sitting at the Barnes and Noble Starbucks back home. For the wanderlusting tourist this phenomenon is a harsh reminder of the shrinking planet, the influence of American culture, big business at its worst. For me, the expatriot, it is a comforting taste of home.
My Starbucks on Union Street.