Friday, February 12, 2010

Grazing: Dr. Bombay’s Underwater Tea Party

Posted By on Fri, Feb 12, 2010 at 2:30 PM

click to enlarge JUST WHAT THE DOCTOR ORDERED: The magical vibe at Dr. Bombay’s
  • JUST WHAT THE DOCTOR ORDERED: The magical vibe at Dr. Bombay’s

I'm sure you've had those moments when, holding something of value that doesn't belong to you, the thought flashes through your mind, "I could easily steal this."

Such was the case at Dr. Bombay's Underwater Tea Party (1645 McLendon Ave., 404-474-1402) one recent afternoon. The shop, which looks like the perfect setting for the Mad Hatter's tea party, is so crammed with books and bric-a-brac that, entering the small restroom, I bumped into the wall and caused three or four books to fall from a shelf. I caught one in my hands on its way to the toilet.

It was an eerie synchronicity – a book whose subject was the very topic of something I'm writing about elsewhere. I carried the book out of the restroom to my table, wrestling with my conscience. But I looked around at the tables full of the young and the earnest, digging into cupcakes and sipping Darjeelings and oolongs, while pounding out class assignments on their MacBooks. I reminded myself that the owner, Katrell Christie, heads a project called the Learning Tea to help finance charitable projects for poor children living in Darjeeling. I put the book down. Later, I learned I could have bought it for next to nothing.

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(Photo by James Camp)

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