This has to be one of the most frequently used words in my vocabulary. If I could only have one drink (other than water) for the rest of my life, it would be coffee. And I’m not even that addicted…

I mean, true, I’m writing an entire post dedicated to it, but I’m not like a 6-cups-per-day person. We’re talking 2, maybe 3 cups on a ridiculous day. And yet it occupies so much of my mental space.

I guess it has to do with the reason I started drinking it in the first place: the culture. I was 20 years old and studying law, and the ‘done thing’ was to take a study-break and grab a coffee from Merlo. And sure, as a non-coffee-drinker, I could go along and grab some other hot beverage, but there was something so humiliating about standing along the wall waiting to hear “hot chocolate for Marita” called amongst all the flat white and macchiato orders; even ‘half-strength-caramel-latte’ sounded less ridiculous.


And so I trained myself. It began as a mocha, once every couple of days, when I felt like I needed a pick-me-up (generally on days when I also had rehearsals). Gradually, I progressed to the half-strength-flat-white, and eventually I could drink a full-strength coffee without grimacing. All of you reading will know how that evolves into a slow-burning addiction: the lips that once grimaced at the taste now curl into a smile of contentment, the hands embrace the cup as though welcoming a dear friend, the sounds of traffic and stress tune out to a duller roar, and the world becomes once more a place of endless opportunity.

Unless the coffee is burnt, in which case: “Run and hide! The dragon is coming for the village!”

Ok, slight exaggeration. Kind of.

About once a year I decide to gauge my addiction: a week without coffee. It normally goes pretty well – I’m still here, aren’t I? – but for some strange reason, Cadbury shares always seem to spike at the same time… crazy the kind of coincidences you notice! That time of year is coming up again, and I just know it will be harder this time. True, I no longer study law, and my days are joyously filled with rehearsals and dancing, but the pull of a coffee moment remains: a time to check-in, to think, to socialise, or to write.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, my coffee has just arrived. And for those of you on the stock market, my sixth sense is predicting a rise in Cadbury shares in the next fortnight or so…

M x


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