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My Favorite Off-Campus Study Spot

By Maya Alexander, Class of 2025

Picture this: it is a Thursday morning — the Thursday morning before fall break to be exact — and you are doing everything in your power to avoid the 7-page essay looming over you.

You’re sitting in a common room, complaining to pretty much everybody on your hall about how annoying it is that you have an essay due in the middle of break. It felt pointless, tedious, and irrelevant. While you know it will eventually help you learn, all you can think about is going home and seeing your friends and somehow… an essay just doesn’t seem to fit in the picture. After ranting to anyone who would listen, you decide to just get it done (rip off the Band-Aid, if you will).

This was my exact situation earlier in the fall and it sucked. I was completely void of inspiration. I sat in my dorm for HOURS on a Wednesday night, staring at my computer screen instead of hanging out with my friends because no words could come to me. Eventually, I gave up and decided that this essay would be a “tomorrow problem.” I set my alarm the next morning and took my first ever walk to Cloche Coffee in Durham for a little change of scenery. And honestly, it made all the difference.

Cloche Coffee in Durham, NC, on Broad Street

Something about the fancy little glass cups they put your drink in and the aesthetic greenery hanging from the ceilings shifted my mindset. I opened my computer, sipped my drink, and, suddenly, I could not stop typing up my essay. Suddenly, it was done!!! I give full credit to the Dirty Chai that I ordered and the wood table that I placed my bag under while working. Maybe they put something in their drinks, or maybe it is just the environment, but coming to Cloche was a total game-changer.

Ever since that day, the 10-minute walk down Broad Street has become a staple in my routine. I get my absolute best work done at Cloche, and in fact, I’m sitting here at this very second writing this blog post.

Grabbing some coffee while reading the DukeStudents blog! What could be better?

Moral of the story: Come to Cloche. You will not regret it. The coffee is amazing, the décor is adorable, and something in the air here makes you work faster and more efficiently than you could ever imagine. If you ever need a break or a little change of scenery, just step off-campus and explore a bit. You can find hidden gems like this all around Durham, and once you do, your productivity will soar!

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