For lack of youth and natural energy, there is caffeine. This is a well known fact for mothers. (And I mean ‘mothers,’ not ‘Muthas.’) I started drinking coffee long before I became a mother. I started drinking coffee regularly and in huge quantities while working the night shifts when I was 18. Quality was not even an optional vocabulary word at that job. Coffee was not something that we had an actual taste for. It was merely another tool for the job. We used pens to log information in a log book. We used computers to store pertinent information. We used air conditioners to keep the computers cold. We used coffee to stay awake all night.
If a more accurate word to describe the shit we drank was to be chosen, I’d probably use something like
“swill,” or “jet fuel,” or “motor oil,” or perhaps “mud.” But we called it coffee simply because it was easily understood that we meant that really thick, hot, black liquid that tasted like cigarette smoke smells. It did the job. I stayed awake. Even.when.I.didn’t.want.to. Honestly, I am quite certain that I still have trace amounts of that stuff in my body now….twenty-five years later. It may be the secret to my insomnia.
Since then I’ve developed a taste for GOOD coffee…the kind that doesn’t make you close your eyes and think happy thoughts in order to choke it down. I mean, that’s not the only criteria for my definition of “good coffee” but it is the first. So I tried a variety of the canned brands and decided that I preferred Folgers over Maxwell House, Dunkin’ Donuts over Starbucks, store brands over all because they were good and cheaper (at least in the world of choose the beans, grind them yourself and you can even choose flavors.) Personally, I think that Starbucks tastes like cat pee smells. I guess it’s personal preference. I have one sister who agrees and shares Dunkin’ Donuts coffee with me. My other sister is a total Starbucks fan. Who knew?
I hear Tim Hortons is good but I think travelling to Canada is a bit extreme for a good cup of coffee. I know that they have American franchises now but not in Texas. Really, what difference does it make? I live in Egypt now.
I started drinking German coffee in Georgia because I worked with a Coffee-nazi . It was fantastic. I re-entered the world of cappuccino and espresso and frappe slowly, as I could afford. Then when we moved to Greece, we bought an automatic drip coffee maker and German coffee. I loved it. Then we moved to Egypt. And it became increasingly difficult to find good coffee. Arabs seemingly prefer not just dark roasted coffee beans but burned coffee beans. So I packed away my coffee pot and went with the only available option that was not Turkish: instant. I know. I know. GROSS! EWWW! What a sacrilege to the coffee world. Well, here’s the thing: It.ain’t. tea.
So Nescafe has been my main means of caffeine intake over the last 10 years. Except when my sweet and wonderful husband brings me a kilo of German coffee back from Greece or a couple of pounds of Dunkin’ Donuts coffee beans from the US. I am a miserly sort. I store the bags in the freezer and only make drip coffee on special occasions so as not to suck it all down and be forced to go back to the instant with no other options. Recently, I discovered a store that sells instant Maxwell House. YES! Score. It’s soooo much better than Nescafe rock gut that brings all those midnight watch coffee horror memories flooding back with the overly acidic aftertaste. Is it still instant? Yes. Is it still not up to par with the stuff I’ve got stashed in the freezer? You betcha. BUT it’s NOT Nescafe and it’s not making me shut my eyes and think happy thoughts in order to choke it down.
p.s. This is not a whine page in an effort to “beat-around-the-bush” begging for sympathy coffee mailed to me. It is what it is. My thoughts on caffeine and my means to getting it short of a melt-proof plastic bag and IV drip. Thank you for your well-intended thoughts about mailing me some. God willing we’ll get back to the US in the next couple of years and then you can meet me and buy me a cup at the local coffee house!