Friday, November 7, 2014

53. Morning Coffee

We have already spoken about caffeine. This isn't about caffeine. This is about coffee. The taste, the smell, the experience of drinking it not for its later effects, but for how it impacts us in the moment that we drink it, when we don't have anywhere in particular that we have to be.

Coffee has become a daily task for a lot of us normal, non-hiker people. Brush teeth. Take shower. Drink coffee. Use toilet. Plan country's 500th anniversary. Arrange a wedding. Murder wife and frame Guilder. Etc. Coffee has become just another mundanity to accomplish in order for us to be functional in the morning. But if coffee commercials are to be believed, good-looking people spend a lot of time sitting around, leisurely sipping their java, being lit by a rising sun on perfect autumn days. For most folks, this hardly ever happens. Even when we're on vacation, we don't always have time to just sit around drinking coffee! No! Put that crap in a to-go cup dude, we've got RELAXING TO DO and it'll NEVER GET DONE if we just sit around being LAZY.

The person in our hiking troupe that most enjoyed waking up early and drinking coffee leisurely was Dumptruck. Due to the fact that he was awake before everyone else, and he was the one with the camera, there is not a single photograph of this really beautiful, calming morning ritual. Dumptruck is currently brushing gigantic piles of hair off of our enormous cats, and I asked him to describe what it was like to drink coffee in the mornings. This is his response verbatim:

"It was nice because even though I was in the woods, I saw people all day. So it was just nice to wake up in the morning and be by myself for a little bit. I might find a stump or a log to sit on, but usually I would just sit on the ground. The stove was nice because it would warm my fingers up in the morning. As the water was boiling, I'd hold my hands curled and open a few inches away from the little fire, and feel the morning chill leave my skin.

"It was great to pour that first cup of coffee. Even though I was surrounded by people I loved, it was nice to be in nature on my own, while everyone was still asleep, and be able to look out at the world. I liked knowing I wasn't going to delay anyone once they woke up. Coffee for me isn't just about waking up, it's an experience. It can be relaxing and soothing. And when coupled with being in the woods, it's pretty much the greatest thing ever.

"Peaceful. That's the word."

A coffee and donuts bought by Dumptruck for his breakfast in Glasgow, VA

Technically I'm eating oatmeal here, but Dumptruck is behind the camera,
drinking coffee. I REMEMBER. 

Wild Rain, making some hot chocolate in Mollies Ridge Shelter

At Tom's house in Dalton, Massachusetts. 

At Mad Hatter's house in Rutland, VT

CoMOMdo, Whistle and Badonkadonk eating leftover oatmeal and getting
leftover coffee at a hut in the White Mountains

At a diner somewhere. These people are perfectly sober.
Notice the little bit of steam coming from Dumptruck's coffee!

StarChild and Funny Bone in a shelter in the 100 Mile Wilderness. We sat and talked
in the morning for a few hours, waiting for the rain to let up. It was beautiful.
Clever Girl

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