When I had a flash of clarity about what I wanted to do with my life (a year after completing a BA in International Relations, and midway through an evening shift at the boy's boarding school at which I worked as a "houseparent") this is what I envisioned:
Me, as an English (literature) Professor in a comfy office, surrounded by books, reveling in the adoration of my students, proffering invaluable pearls of wisdom about great novels.
In graduate school, I modified the vision:
Me, disheveled, face inches above a steaming coffee, in a nice coffee shop, reading obscure international novels and hiding from: students, grading, publishing and other responsibilities less pleasurable than the reading which is also, legitimately, part of the job.
The graduate school vision persists as a seldom-realized ideal.
Today I got to sit on the patio of good coffee shop, reading (and--though it wasn't so bad--prepping lecture notes) while drinking a vast latte.
I may have to kiss my mother-in-law on the lips when I get home later, for it is only because she is there, looking after the children (meaning I don't have to take them to their respective daycares) that I am able to have 40 minutes or so "extra" in the morning.
She's from the Midwest. She'd be appalled. Perhaps by the kiss, perhaps equally by the notion of "working" (reading) at a coffee shop.