Lately the head custodian at our school and I have been spending more time connecting with each other. While his office has been across the hall from my room for two years, it seems that what has been bringing us together as of late is, well, you guessed it… our mutual love for coffee. He has a little 4-cup coffee maker in his office and we keep taking turns making each other a cup at strategic points throughout the week. At times I’ll be in the middle of a lesson when he’ll stick his head in my doorway to let me know he’s getting ready to brew a pot of Honduran. And on some days those words seem to come straight from heaven
But what is it about coffee that brings people together? Since it stormed into the world hundreds of years ago it has not failed to be something that unites people. Recently I read a book that cited a little fact about coffee when it made its way to London. It first hit the city in the 1780s, and within the next twenty years 2,000 cafes sprung up in the city. Two thousand! That’s a crazy number.
Revolutions, artistic movements, political strategizing and more have been linked to coffee houses and mankind’s crazed love of the roasted bean down through the centuries. For example, Les Six, a group of six French composers that included the likes of Claude Debussy regularly met in Parisian cafes to discuss a new form of music we call impressionism today. Ideas and coffee, art and coffee, music and coffee… do I see a right brain thing going on here?
And it’s no different for many of us. We too regularly meet our friends, family and business associates over a cup of coffee. We talk deeply about our lives, what we believe, our hopes and dreams… or maybe how much our kids are driving us up a wall at the moment! Even yesterday I heard a piece on NPR about doctors who assist horses as they’re giving birth – excuse the lack of technical terminology here. In interviewing one Lexington, KY doctor, the first thing he said he always does after the birth is make a pot of “barn coffee.”
Yes, coffee is way more than just a beverage. The sound of the grinder and the smell of the aroma are often enjoyed in the company of the people we love the most. For some crazy reason, God seems to have embedded something in the little bean that, when roasted, ground and brewed is deeply connected to our desire to connect with one another. In fact, the first conversation I had my wife was over a cappuccino at Rhos Street Cafe in Clifton.
So, for me, I will continue to look forward to those little moments throughout the week when Rick sticks his head in my room and let’s me know he’s getting ready to make some coffee! How about you? Do you have a coffee story? Share it and I’ll post it to our blog!/