March 23, 2012


Do you need coffee to wake up in the morning?

To me, coffee and morning are synonymous.  The answer of course, to this question, is YES!

Anyone who knows me, knows my love of this ‘nectar of the gods’!  Coffee is a huge part of my life.  From as far back as I can remember, coffee has been a part of my life in one way or another.

When I was in my pre-teens, while still in elementary school, there would be those odd days throughout the school year where we would be home from school.  Whether it be because we were sick, or a “PD Day”.  At about 10am, if we were home, mom would have us run over to the various other homes in the neighbourhood with other moms at home, and invite them over for coffee.

Slowly, the other women would come over.  They would all sit around the table, and on occasion, sit in the living room, drinking coffee and chatting about the issues pertinent to the day.  Whether it be the gossip from around the neighbourhood, what their children and families were up to, future plans… whatever.  It was a chance for them all to get together for an hour or so, and talk to someone.

Every meal that we ever sat down to at home, whether it be Sunday morning breakfast, or weekday evening dinners, mom and dad always had coffee.  Always!

I think one of the things that got me enjoying coffee, was smelling the freshly made coffee on Sunday mornings.  When breakfast was being prepared (bacon, eggs, toast), there would also be the luxurious scent of coffee wafting over it all!  Granted, in those earlier days, my parents didn’t have a coffee maker.  They drank instant coffee.  Nonetheless, the scent was still intoxicating.

Oftentimes, as with many other potential vices like smoking, I can hear mom saying, “You want to smoke, smoke with us.  If you’re going to smoke, we’d rather you do here with us, rather than sneak behind our backs.”  Well, the same basic philosophy applied to drinking coffee.  I don’t think mom or dad ever denied us a cup of coffee.  Perhaps as a young kid, we just didn’t want any.

However, as time passed, and I honestly can’t remember the first time I had coffee, I did begin drinking this fine beverage.  As time went on, my parents did buy a coffee maker.  If I’m not mistaken, the first one was a normal coffee maker. It made something like 10 or 12 cups of coffee, but for these coffee hounds, and the fact that they used mugs instead of cups, it was more like 5 or 6!  Nonetheless, making coffee changed from putting a teaspoon or so of Maxwell House instant coffee and hot water into a mug, to using ground coffee from a tin, measuring it out into the basket, adding the water, letting it brew, and voila – a pot of coffee reading in about 5 minutes!  Bless technology.

The scent of the brewing coffee got my mouth watering.  You could smell it all through the house, almost as potent as the roast beef.  Eventually, making pot after pot after pot became a hassle I suppose.  My parents then purchased a coffee urn.  This creature of all the kitchen gadgets, would make 100 cups of coffee.  It also took a bit longer to brew, but the convenience of having ‘coffee on tap’ far outweighed any negative issues about it.

Once this urn came into the house, I’m almost sure the coffee producers new their businesses were safe for life.  On occasion, I remember making a SECOND urn of coffee part way through the day.  Especially during weekends or when relatives were in town.  Mom was usually the first one up in the morning.  The coffee urn would have been prepared the night before – urn cleaned out, water put in, basket filled with coffee grinds, and ready for the next day.  Mom would get up, plug in the urn, and by the time everyone got up, the coffee was ready.

More times than not, there was still coffee left at the end of the day while mom and dad watched the 11pm news.  Now, you must realize that, as much as I enjoy a magnificently made cup of coffee, there is a point at which coffee becomes sludge.

My parents always drank their coffee with ‘whitener’ and sugar.  The ‘whitener’ was either milk, or later on, a powdered ‘whitener’ like CoffeeMate.  Anyone who drinks coffee, will probably shudder to know that someone would use CoffeeMate to make their coffee brown, instead of black.  Personally, very shortly after moving out on my own, I got used to drinking coffee ‘au naturel’ – that is, black.  No pollutants as I call them – sugar or ‘whitener’ of any kind.  Brew the coffee, drink the coffee.

However, and this is something that I’ve never really shared with people, I like CoffeeMate.  Not in my coffee, but just to eat a teaspoon of it.  I don’t know, there’s something about the flavour of CoffeeMate I like.  Hahaha.  I can’t believe I just shared this information.  Oh well.

Whenever I was asked to get mom and dad a cup of coffee, it would be 1 teaspoon of ‘whitener’ in mom’s cup, 1 teaspoon of ‘whitener’ in dad’s cup, and 1 teaspoon of ‘whitener’ in my mouth!  Back then, I’d like to believe that my parents didn’t know what I was up to, but now that I’m well into adulthood, I have to come to the realization that they weren’t stupid.  I’m sure they knew, but never said anything.  If I look at that way, they probably had a good laugh at my expense.

 

 

That’s it, that’s all… for now!

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