As senior spring zooms closer to its end, I find that the weekends slip through my fingers like sand. My friends and I have seemingly endless to-do lists of places we have to go before we graduate, and cramming them all in poses a fun challenge.
But last weekend I didn’t check off anything new... and I didn’t feel as though the time was wasted. Instead, I revisited some of my Baltimore staples, the favorites that I have taken for granted over time. Here’s a glimpse at the places I’ll miss most come May 24th.
While I’ve written about the 32nd Street Farmers Market, formerly the Waverly Farmers Market, before, I’m forced to sing its praises at least once more.
If, like me, you’ve become numb to the pure wonder of the buzzing lot full of happy people and their fresh produce, try visiting the market solo this Saturday.
Arrive between 9 and 10 a.m. for the full hustle and bustle: The fish guy is back now that it’s spring, so if you want some salmon I recommend starting a bit earlier.
When you walk into the square, take a moment to really look around. Don’t just fixate on your veggies of choice. Look at the people; They’re a fairly funky bunch, a mix of many colors and ages and intensities of shopping.
Sample a stand you haven’t patronized before. Buy some bizarre produce, sniff some fresh-baked bread, and leave feeling happy with the high goods-to-price ratio.
The farmers’ market satisfies mind, body, soul and wallet. To me, it is one of the best things about living in Charles Village. When I go to the Farmers Market I feel truly a part of a larger community. I suddenly become a neighbor to hundreds of people I have never met. When I move away from Baltimore this summer, I’ll miss the Farmers Market as much as (or more than!) I miss Gilman.
Charmington’s holds a special place in my heart. Originally discovered with another senior friend of mine, I was happy to take an underclassman pal to the co-op coffeehouse this weekend.
Nestled in Remington at 2601 Howard St., Charmington’s is just far enough away to feel like an escape from campus but close enough to make a Sunday coffee trip reasonable.
Open early morning to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and until 5 p.m. on Sundays, the shop feels hip and communal any hour of the day.
It accomplishes what Bird in Hand aimed for and missed: At Charmington’s, the long wooden tables allow enough space to sit comfortably amongst strangers.
What struck me about Charmington’s on this visit was the adult feeling of the place. It samples young, hip Baltimore perfectly: a mix of 20- and 30-somethings, a healthy diversity of race and snippets of intellectual conversation going on at each table.
There’s none of the undercurrent of tension that you find in Brody Cafe, where everyone seems to eat a little too fast or talk a little too loud.
Charmington’s is zen in a progressive way. No one cares about what you’re doing or when your next exam is. But you don’t feel ignored, you feel camaraderie with your fellow coffee drinkers. It was fun for me, a senior, to share this special space with my younger friend. I want her to have as many lazy Sunday study sessions here as I did.
The OG friend spot, One World Café is certainly a staple for me. I’ve spent many an afternoon taking full advantage of their free refills as I study in the open seating area and many a brunch laboring over which special to order because how am I supposed to choose between potentially perfect pancakes and an orgasm-inducing omelette?
Lunch and dinner at One World can be very affordable and very healthy, or, if I’m feeling extravagant, bountiful beyond measure.
One World cake slices are my go-to for friend’s birthdays when I’ve forgotten to bake, and now that I’m 21, the drink specials ($3.50 margs on Tuesdays!) can’t be beat.
I’ve eaten at One World with my family, my boyfriend, my ex-boyfriend, my roommate, my ex-roommate, my running buddy, my new friends, my old friends, my professors, my boss and just by myself.
I’ve eaten One World cake for breakfast a few times (and once during a 9 a.m. Orgo lecture). I’ve laughed a lot and reminisced about old memories, and created new ones. I’ve even cried once or twice.
My point? Find your One World. Where is it that you’ve been a thousand times with friends? What place did you sow the seeds of many friendships, where you head to by default when you need a good feed?
Whether it’s Ajumma, Carma’s or Tamber’s, I’m sure each senior has a Charles Village favorite. Take a trip down memory lane before you graduate and have a meal where you’re aware of the subtle beauty in the place.