Blogging from: Idle Time & Tryst

No one told me that parking my car in D.C. would give me severe anxiety. It’s not because of the traffic or anything like that. It’s because none of the Pay to Park stations work! I had finally found a legal curbside parking space, only to find that I wasn’t really able to make it “legal” because of stupid failed technology’s inability to allow me to pay for it. Seriously, people. It’s almost 2012. We have robots in space  and iPads! I don’t think a working Pay to Park Station is too much to ask for. You’d think our nation’s capitol would be much more efficient, right? HA!

For this reason, today’s “Blogging From” post is a combination recap of my time at  Idle Time Books and Tryst, all of which was spent playing the game of, “How Long Can I Last Before I Break Into a Serious Sweat Wondering Weather or Not I’ve Received a Parking Ticket I Can’t Afford for Something Completely Out of My Control.”

Pretty books!

Thankfully, Idle Time and Tryst are located only a few doors down from one another. I was headed to Tryst because reader Mike Ridley so kindly recommended it as one of his favorite “work in public” D.C. establishments. It was originally my one and only destination, where I was planning to sit and stay a while. But as I made my way up the street, a bright green storefront came into view and there was absolutely no question as to whether or not I was going to go in.

It looks so dreamy!

Idle Time; what an ironic store name given my time-limited situation. I really had no “idle time,” but I stepped inside and gave the store a quick browse. It was a pretty standard used book store. You won’t find every single book here but they have a hearty selection of classic literature, non-fiction, science, history, and a few other categories too. They also have a miniature vinyl record section, which is something that for me, will always set any store apart from others. Books and music man. Books and music.

I ventured upstairs where plenty of signs had indicated I would find even more books. And more books I found. A small and simple quirk that added that little extra something to the store was the books that were lined along the stairs. The types of books a store chooses to feature in this kind of fashion give the store character. Judging by their staircase books, I’d pin Idle Time’s character as classically diverse. And of course all things classic are essentially good.

All stairs of the world need books.

The second floor was warm and inviting thanks to it’s large windows and the sunshine shining through. With a few chairs scattered here and there, the store certainly invites its shoppers to pop a squat and read for a while. Unfortunately I had not been granted the luxury of doing so.

Motto: No corporate coffee, no matching silverware.

As for Tryst, I’m a little disappointed that I didn’t get to spend some quality time with my laptop there. Although, I don’t know that even if I had had the time I would have been able to, because man, the place was packed. There was not one empty table that I could see. Almost everyone there was either working on a laptop or buried in a book with a highlighter in their hand. Clearly, Tryst is a D.C. Student “work in public” hot-spot. It was a bit loud in there though. I’m not sure if I would be able to concentrate on writing surrounded by so many chatty “studiers.”

Because of my anxiety-induced time limit, I walked up to the to-go counter and ordered a Strawberry Banana Pineapple smoothie. So all I can tell you about Tryst is that it’s crowded on Saturdays, they’ve got some kick-butt artwork on their walls (I spied Dirty Harry), they have decent smoothies, and oh, really good looking men work there. At least three different handsome baristas assisted me with my order and they only made me wish that I could have stayed a while.

Conclusions

Are these good places for reading and writing?

Idle Time: I could see myself getting lost in books pulled from their shelves for hours at time. (That is when I have the time. *Rolls eyes at city of D.C.*) So yes. But it’s not so much a “write in public” place.

Tryst: Yes. Not that I would really know, but everyone else there seemed to be getting some kind of work done.

Bonus Points: Tryst and Idle Time are neighbors on 18th St NW in D.C.’s cutesy Adams Morgan neighborhood. They are like bookstore and coffee shop best friends!

Idle Time on Facebook

Tryst’s Website // Tryst on Facebook  // Tryst on Twitter

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About Katie @ Hungry Runner

All things running, fitness and good food!

Posted on September 22, 2011, in Book Stores, Coffee Shops and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. This is a great idea for a blog. Now I just need you to come and do a UK tour 😀

  2. Boo for DC parking – I don’t think I’ve ever been able to park there without some sort of issue. I probably would have found a way to trip over those books on the stairs…lol

    • So glad someone else can attest to the terrible parking! It’s ridiculous!

      Haha! I almost did trip trying to take photos of the books on the stairs, between trying to get a somewhat decent angle (I’m no photographer) and trying to stay out of other shopper’s way it was a tedious task! Thankfully I managed to stay upright! 🙂

  3. Glad you made it to Tryst. I probably should have warned you that it would be crowded and parking in Adams Morgan can be a challenge. There actually is a garage right down the street off an alley that I always park in. More expensive than street parking but the sanity I get in return makes it a worthwhile value proposition for me.

    I like Tryst, but I also live in the Virginia suburbs so I’m only there once in a blue moon. I might find the constant crush of people less enchanting if it were my neighborhood coffee house option. They do have good coffee and a tasty menu, however, and as you say – everyone else seems to get work done there.

  1. Pingback: Blogging From: Fresh & Organic « Blogging From Bookstores

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