So today I’m going to step away from the physical aspects of coffee, the Douwe Egberts Senseo coffee pods, the pine coffee table, large coffee table and lift top coffee table and other products related to coffee and I’m going to spend a moment navel gazing about coffee. I want to talk to the emotional and for me mental aspects of coffee. Why I love coffee.
I think I came to coffee later than many. I was probably 15 or 16 when I first indulged in this dark brown almost black elixir. But it was instant coffee with heaping helpings of sugar and half a gallon of cream. Milk was for babies! This was back in the halcyon days of South Africa where I grew up. Note, those were halcyon days for me, not for the country or my ideology. Just a caveat there.
It was probably much later when I came to North America that I learned to really indulge in black coffee. This was the hardest part of my coffee transformation, moving towards black coffee. But it was a necessity, because unless you can appreciate black unadulterated coffee you haven’t really and fully explored the subtleties of coffee. And that’s okay. Just like some people enjoy a glass of red wine without appreciating the subtleties, so do some folks enjoy coffee with cream and sugar, for the buzz or the adulterated taste. I wanted more from my coffee. I wanted to drink deeply from coffee culture itself and explore the nuances of the coffee berry or coffee cherry and it’s micro environment.
So let me count the ways I love thee, my coffee my friend 🙂 Now, my relationship with coffee beans and the coffee grind and coffee makers is one of symbiosis. I’ll call it that, because frankly I’m addicted to coffee. I’ve given up coffee enough times that I know I’m in for a headache and a bit of constipation for a couple or three days. But that’s not something that a dose of aspirin can’t eradicate. So yeah, my name’s Rick and I’m a coffeeholic!
Nevertheless, I speak of my love for coffee from the sublime and subtle emotional and mental aspects of the glorious coffee beans and each time I sit down to enjoy a cup of my favorite espresso coffee beans or other kind, I know I owe a debt of gratitude to the Ethiopian berbers who came before me, or perhaps more specifically Kaldi the Ethiopian goatherd who is rumored to be the genius behind coffee.
Now when I talk of coffee in such dulcet tones I could also talk of tea, especially Oolong tea my fav. But this is about my love affair with coffee. And it springs I think from my love affair with Mother Earth. Gaia our eternal spirit of abundance. Okay, I’m getting carried away, but you know that about me if you’ve been on this blog before.
But truly, for me, coffee connects we with the environment around me in an intimate way. From the 100 Kona coffee beans to the wooden coffee tables, my daily coffee cup is really a genuflection to the abundance and respect for Earth’s bounty. I think all of us who are serious about our coffee appreciate the tenuous thread that the coffee bean or coffee tree represents between us and the Earth. Coffee requires a specific and somewhat fragile ecosystem in order for the coffee tree to offer up their best coffee cherries. And as we become more removed from the environment that we depend upon, we remove ourselves perhaps from the damage we are doing to this environment.
So for me, my love of coffee is about keeping it real (as the young kids say :)) and keeping that tenuous thread connected from me to the environment. And it is from this perspective that I am always looking to enjoy as much free trade organic coffee that I can. I’m not fascist or militant about it, just aware. And when the choices allow themselves, my default is always towards doing the least harm.
Does this make sense? Am I rambling fool buzzing along on a coffee high or does this love of coffee resonate with your own appreciation for this tender coffee bean and your favorite dark roasted cup of coffee?