Perfect Cup of Coffee

I bought myself a stove-top espresso maker about a month ago and have been loving it. Still trying to get the hang of it, especially because it includes an insert so you can make only 3 cups instead of 6 cups–but there’s not mark on the water reservoir to tell you quite where half is. And it’s very subjective anyway.

Today, I made the perfect cup.

Generally, I mix it with some warm milk for a sort of faux latte. Usually it’s soy milk and the brand that I buy has a very nice, very subtle nutty flavour to it. Added to the very subtle nutty flavour of the espresso today yielded the perfect cup.

I’m bad at describing flavours. Suffice it to say that I’m currently enjoying heaven in a mug. And needed to share.

Dreams

I’m not one who often remembers his dreams. Even when I do remember them, they don’t always tend to be so exciting.

I woke up this morning and remember TWO of my dreams last night. I’m only going to write about one of them here, though, because it’s the far more exciting one and it had a repeat element from a dream I had a month or two ago–I think it might have been around Easter when I had this other dream.

The repeat element was the place. A church. My church. Except not. You know that feeling in a dream where you know a place and you know that it’s a certain place even though it looks nothing like that place in real life?

The church in my dream was huge. Probably bigger than any church I can think of that I’ve ever been in. Lots of different sections of pews and lots of side chapels and such. Clearly a cathedral or something. The first time I dreamed about this church, I was late for the service and I was again late for service this time. The first time, there was a very big, very theatrical celebration going on but I don’t remember the reason. There were people in costume, puppets, bands… maybe if church were like that every Sunday, more people would go (although they’d probably lose sight of what church is actually all about…). Last night, there was also a special service going on, but it was a first communion service combined with confirmation.

And I was there to man the espresso bar.

Pretty cool church in my dream, huh? Especially since the espresso bar was right up front. Not on the altar, but in the front section of pews. So, I’m late again for the service and I get there and start getting the bar ready and set up, the machine turned on and all this.

It seemed to make perfect sense that I should be doing this. I was just frazzled a bit because I was late (as I always stress when I espresso-train new hires: turn the machine on FIRST THING when you walk in the door in the morning. It takes 15-20 minutes to heat up and get up to pressure. Then you have to season the groups, check your grind setting, adjust your grind setting…).

So, the service is going on as I’m getting things ready. No one really seemed to notice or be bothered by the fact that I was late and was still trying to get ready to serve espresso (after the service, maybe?). Except that I didn’t really know where anything was exactly. It was a pretty nice set-up. Very sleek. Stainless steel fridges and cabinets. But set into really nice wooden counters. Some kind of light-coloured wood. Thinking back on it, it’s actually a horrid combination (steel + wood) but it was very impressive in the dream.

Despite the set-up being very nice, nothing was where I would have expected it to be. I kept opening cabinets and fridges thinking, clearly, this is where this should be. I kept having to go to the next pew/espresso station back to get things. Yes, there was more than one machine. There were four, actually. Two pews, one machine on the front and one on the back. They weren’t actual pews, though, but these steel and wood cabinet instillation things. And wider than regular pews.

Like I said, it all made sense in the dream.

So, we came to the point in the service where the kids were actually going to celebrate their first communions and there were cakes and sparklers involved in that. And then there was only one girl who was going to be confirmed. And she had to get up and lay down on the altar itself and then she started to sink into it, as if the top were a platform that led down somewhere.

And then I woke up.

Questions? Comments? Concerns?

My mind is a fucked up place, I know. For the record, I hadn’t had any coffee since about 5 yesterday afternoon. I had a pint of Trois Pistoles (those of you in Montreal know Trois Pistoles–it’s a Montreal beer that, happily, I can easily get here, along with some of the other Unibroue beers) with dinner. And dinner wasn’t anything out of the ordinary.

In other words, I don’t think the dream was food-related. Incidentally, though, the other dream also had a very specific espresso sub-plot to it. Hm. Maybe I’m working too much? Yesterday was kind of a shit day at work.

I beg you…to have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language. Do not search for the answers, which could not be given you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.

Rainer Maria Rilke

I’m trying…