Cafe, bakery creates perfect hideout


Kaldi’s coffee is located downtown at 29 S. Ninth Street, and is open from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m on weekdays and from 7 a.m to 11 p.m on weekends.

Maria Kalaitzandonakes

Kaldi’s coffee is located downtown at 29 S. Ninth Street and is open from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m on weekdays and from 7 a.m to 11 p.m on weekends.
When I was little I had a tree house, a fort made of pillows and sheets or a big cardboard box that said “Do not disturb.” And as I grew up, hideaways became more important. It is a place where I can shut off my phone, sit back and not worry about Calculus and (shockingly) have a long, real conversation.
Kaldi’s is my hide out. From the second I open the heavy door, I feel at home. The smell of the maple pumpkin spice latte greets me fondly, and the tinkling of glasses and whispers of conversation guide me in as I wait in line to get my cup. The old-style frames on the walls hold black boards with drawings of that day’s specials, and sometimes a little advice or Mizzou cheer.
I order my mocha in a ‘for here’ cup and I sit down in the beaten up wooden chairs.
Sometimes I go alone and watch the lonely cactus sitting up high in the window. I listen to nearby tables and smile at priceless conversational gems like, “What if you dated a girl with the same name as your cat? That would be weird. You’d probably have to re-name your girlfriend.”
Sometimes I go with a friend or two, and we cover all the topics imaginable. The pumpkin colored walls beg for the customers to spill their secrets, not their drinks.
Eventually they call out my name. Some people are really clever and give names like “Regina Falange,” others are a tad obnoxious and give ones like “Senorita Ishmababa,” both of which I have heard. I always order with the intent of giving a great name, and then when they ask “Can I have a name for that?” I freeze up and forget, and just say, “Um.. Maria?”
So the barista calls out “Maria,” and I walk up and get my coffee. My mocha has a heart in it. I sit down, content as can be, and sip out of my big ceramic mug, overlooking the community board and knowing that I have chosen wisely for my hideaway.
This place is perfect. Coffee in one hand, an old book in the other; the only thing that would make it better is a cardboard sign saying “please do not disturb.”
By Maria Kalaitzandonakes