Getting used to latte time

October 5, 2009 at 1:19 am Leave a comment

When you’re meeting someone for coffee, what do you think about beforehand? Maybe what you’ll talk about while you catch up? Maybe the business you’ll be doing with them? The weather so you know what to wear? Maybe you’ve never met them so you’re wondering how you’ll know them?

But to plan when to arrive at the cafe, if you’re a Brisbane person meeting a Sydney person, there’s something else to consider.

In this case, don’t hurry. Brisbane people have a tendency to think that if they’re meeting someone at 5pm, they need to be there at 5pm.

A Sydney person, on the other hand, will happily turn up at 5.15pm or 5.30pm or so, strolling along to the meeting relaxed and at ease. They will feel perfectly ok and would be terribly taken aback if anyone suggested they’d arrived late. Late, them? Where did you get that idea?

If they arrive at 5.45pm or later, they might laughingly tell you all about the contretemps that delayed them. It will usually be a complicated story that stresses how complex and busy their life is, how much in demand they are and how difficult it is for them to fit in everything that’s asked of them, so you must realise they’ve really done well to turn up at all!

They will be gently amused to hear that the person they’re meeting had arrived at 5pm. Or even worse, 4.50pm, to make sure they weren’t late. Noone, but noone, actually arrives on time in Sydney.

Unless they’re a Brisbane person. So if you see someone standing outside a cafe in Glebe Point Road for 30 or 45 minutes looking at their watch and up the street, it’s just possible they’re a pawpaw waiting for a latte, and they are taking a while to learn the local ways.

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