My love-hate relationship with coffee took another unexpected twist the other week when I discovered I quite like the espressos our new office coffee machine makes. I’ve even taught myself how to make one. Okay, this involves little more than pressing a few buttons and setting a cup under a nozzle but it’s an achievement for me nonetheless, and I feel like the most sophisticated Italian barista in the land. Anything beyond that though and I’m flummoxed.
I’m not as keen on big mugs of the stuff, that some of my work colleagues guzzle down by the gallon. I’ve tried that and it left me feeling a bit queasy. Nope, short, sharp caffeine infusions appear to suit me better. Anymore than that and I’m prone to moan about an upset stomach and revert sulkily back to my tin of Diet Coke. It’s taken many decades for me to learn what a boundary is and not to cross it. Long may that continue.
The espresso gadget at home is a different kettle of fish. Every time I step within six feet of it, let alone consider using it, something goes awry. Red lights appear and strange noises emanate from it. I’m an utter technophobe at the best of times but this does nothing for my confidence in such matters. The machine obviously despises me and I usually end up having to call Fionnuala to rescue me from its evil clutches. 21st century life is hard.
As for coffee shops, I’m equally hopeless. The immense range of choice and unpronounceable drinks make it a daunting experience that I fear I’m woefully unprepared for. I’m still gathering up the courage to speak to a barista for fear they will look down their noses at me, tut and shoo me from the shop, head hanging in shame. At times like this I yearn for a coffee buddy to show me the ropes and induct me into this strange new world I’ve uncovered.
Just like the beverage, I’m an acquired taste. I’ll dither over choice, ask innumerable stupid questions and pull various faces of disgust as I sample the various brands and blends. On the plus side, I’m reasonably good company, will adhere strictly to social distancing guidelines and pay my way. Interested? Then feel free to comment below and blow me away with your sparkling repartee and love of all things caffeinated