BY MONICA DIX. FLORIDA. USA
So many beautiful taste memories of coffee: the contrasts over half a lifetime start to take shape…
Coffee was our companion in the cold, dark Midwest, painfully young artists huddling around wobbly tables of the King Avenue Coffeehouse emphatically quoting Wilde and Yeats, Sartre and Rumi, Kahlo, Hemingway and O’Keefe, drinking pot after pot of French press hazelnut-flavored coffee mixed with sweetened milk, wearing wool, aching to stay warm, aching for each other.
Now I spend my days in the southern sun, the air is heavy, unmoving, the blinding sky is oppressive in the hours people are up and about. Now I read Montessori, MFK Fisher, Billy Collins, and still Hemingway, and do not quote much to anyone, just soaking it in. Solitude is precious. So my days begin very early, in the dark, before the sun can catch me. I quietly pour rich, black, cold-brewed coffee, steeped the night before with cardamom, over lots of ice, and take it outside to put a chill in my bones and do a little reading before the kids and the sun command my attention.