Do you often walk past a shop or cafe always meaning to go in and have a look but never quite managing it? I do, or at least I did until today. Today I walked into, rather than past, Beautiful Planet on Friairgate in Preston.
It's a little community cafe selling environmentally friendly drinks, snacks and wholefoods. The outside is decorated with murals of trees and plants and the inside contains leaflets on ever aspect of ethical living you can think of. 50p will get you a take away tea and for £1.60 I'm happily sitting at one of their free-to-customers computers drinking a fairtrade, organic Indian Chai Tea and a piece of "lovely cake"-fruit cake.
The cafe is run completely by volunteers and must make £165 a week to break even. The staff are extremely friendly and I even got a nice Maths chat with Bret who was serving me as we discovered we both share an undergradaute maths history. Places like this really inspire me. A tiny corner of a street filled with consumer driven goods and fast food places which offer a quiet spot to sit, drink a warm cuppa and either be quietly peaceful for a few minutes or have a chat about politics, the environment or the local community.
I think Beautiful Planet might have a new regular now I've finally made it through the door and while I doubt I have enough time for yet another volunteering commitment I'd love to get more involved.