I remember when Starbucks first started opening everywhere in the late '90s. I was in South Florida at the time, recently graduated, and found a church that met in a small theater and whose pastor took meetings in Starbucks, where he spent most of his weekdays. The place felt so novel then, and the coffee so good compared to what else was available.
In the early '00s, I was in Arlington, VA. I went to a Chuck Prophet concert and in some of his frequent and entertaining stage banter, he described how welcome a McDonalds or a Starbucks was when traveling. They represented the familiar and predictable amongst the foreign and chaotic.
By the late '00s, I was in Dallas, TX and Starbucks represented the worst in both coffee and capitalism. Local roasters emerged. Starbucks wasn't novel and their coffee wasn't good.
Now, in the late '10s (I think that might be the first time I ever referred to this decade as such), I'm more apt to agree with Chuck Prophet. And while I tend to drink something from Starbucks every afternoon--there's one a block away from our office downtown and no other coffee shop nearby--I more appreciate the familiar and predictable in my chaotic life in this foreign land.