Liquid Johnny’s is a bar and restaurant on the corner of 76th Street and West Main Street in Milwaukee, easy walking distance from the Wisconsin State Fair RV Park. I wrote a post about it back in September after we’d discovered it when we were working Harley’s 110th.
In addition to an amazing Fish Fry Friday, Liquid Johnny’s has free Wi-Fi. The place is small and casual, with a bar on one side and four-seat tables on the other. Laminated menus stay tucked up against the wall at each table. It’s not really a sports bar, but there are plenty of TVs scattered around if you want to catch the game. Although there’s no charge for Wi-Fi, you do need to ask for the password.
One night when I still had work to do and Mike wanted to have dinner with a colleague, we headed to Liquid Johnny’s. I had some chips and salsa with a glass of Merlot while Mike chatted with his friend. It was a nifty twist on the usual coffice experience!
Being a freelancer can be isolating. Being a mobile freelancer, who’s generally never in one place more than a week, can become a sort of solitary confinement. Getting out in the world helps a lot, so I frequently do my work over a cup of coffee (or tea) at a place with free Wi-Fi. Starbucks and McDonald’s are always reliable options. The hustle and bustle is energizing, and catching snippets of conversation makes you feel a bit like you’re in on the office gossip. But their homogeny strips a town of its uniqueness.
Our stays are so short that I don’t have much of an opportunity to get the flavor of the communities we’re in. So I seek out local coffee shops as much as possible. At these small businesses, it will likely be the owner that’s taking your order and handing over your latte. Patronizing these kinds of places means my dollars are helping that community thrive while I’m getting my work done. The other customers and their conversation, sometimes their accents, gives me a sense of the character of the area.
Even the coffee selections are representative, like the Maple Latte at Black Cap Coffee in Stowe, Vermont. The steamy drink is made with real Vermont maple syrup along with espresso and milk, and it’s delicious. So is the broccoli and cheese quiche – with the most broccoli and the least cheese I’ve had yet – and the spicy black bean soup. Working at Black Cap was one of my favorite parts of our visit to Vermont, and I’m looking forward to finding other local treasures like it as we continue on our motorhoming escapade.