I am SO grateful for Coffee in my life.
As a child born after WW2, coffee was a major part of the adult rite of passage that was ubiquitous to the US. Children were not allowed to have a cup of their own in most homes. Or, they’d get a mostly milk form of it. Mornings always started with the smell of the coffee brewing that let you know that someone else was already up and making things ready for the day. It was a comforting smell to kids like me.
Coffee was a part of social gatherings, too. You smelled it at church events, in restaurant dining rooms, and at family gatherings. It was always there – the smell and offering of hot coffee. You learned to provide for coffee drinkers even if you didn’t care for the brew. That pot of coffee wouldn’t last very long at any gathering, and eventually we learned how to use thermoses in pretty carafes to serve it when another pot was brewing.
While my parents always drank their coffee black and simple, I enjoyed mine with milk and sweetener, and still do. My former husband would drink no less than a pot a day, and on really busy days at home he’d drink more than that – especially if he was working in cold areas. It was his favorite way to warm up.
My oldest son still enjoys the smell of fresh brewed or fresh ground coffee, though he doesn’t often enjoy drinking it. It’s just a smell of stability and good things happening. He admitted that he’ll dawdle in the store aisles if someone looks like they are going to grind some coffee beans.
Another reason that many folks my age drank coffee was because a cup of coffee was cheap and refills were free. So if you were going out with friends to just chat and visit, but you didn’t have much money, you could order that cup of coffee so you could join in the outing. It’s the only reason I learned to enjoy a cup. My beverage of choice for a morning was cola, to my husband’s horror when we first married.
There are a few in my generation who have continued to use some form of soda pop for their morning hydration, but I’m a solid coffee drinker, now. It just seems to set the tone for good things in a day. I feel ready to take on the complexities of anything when I have a good strong cup of coffee at hand. I also feel comforted and comfortable when I am enjoying some coffee with someone else.
I thank God for coffee because it allowed me to be present when I felt like I couldn’t enjoy life much, as a poor teen. Later, it allowed my husband and I to sit for hours in coffee shops just dating each other on a shoestring. All of that gave me great memories of robust goodness through my adult years.
Eventually, special brews arrived (Hello Starbucks), and then to my astonishment, cold coffee versions as well! I’ve enjoyed some of them, and still do, so they aren’t all that bad. Some of the instant cappuccino versions have even been enjoyed from time to time as well.
But nothing makes me feel like everything is good like a drip brewed, robust and strong (but not bitter), cup of coffee with milk or half and half stirred in with some sweetener. The Keurig types were tried, and just don’t have the same flavor for me. So I’m back to the drip kind, and I have my own favorite grind and brand, of course.
There’s just something about the goodness of a cup of coffee that is just at the right temperature for gulping. It makes me feel like God is near, and all is right with the world and my mindset when I enjoy a hot cup – anywhere.