National Coffee Day

Bumbi’s Mom has a love letter to coffee, which pretty much sums it up.

Until I met my Love, coffee was whatever came out of the urn at a jobsite or a diner nearby.

My Love, on the other hand … “Fanatic” would not be too strong a word.

Just to give you an idea: She has three burr grinders, one set for the filter coffeemaker, one for the French press and one for the espresso machine. The espresso machine is a brass, lever-action Pavoni – a gorgeous work of art.

My Love is NOT a morning person.

On the first morning I stayed in her apartment, I was up first. I made coffee. When she woke up, I brought her a cup in bed.

She took one sip. Without a word, she got up, went to the kitchen, poured the cup down the drain, picked up the pot and poured it down the drain. Then,

Sweetie, I love you more than life itself. But if I have to get up before you to keep you from making ghastly coffee, this is going to be a short romance.

And she showed me how to make coffee. It took me a half-dozen tries before I made a pot that she would even taste.

She wouldn’t let me touch the Pavoni until I’d been in New York for months. It was a month before I could pull an espresso that didn’t taste like hot water soaked in the butts of cheap cigars. It was another month before I could pull an acceptable crema.

Now, she will even drink my espresso. I’ve never been so proud of any accomplishment. I bask in the glow of her favor.

And I’m as fanatic as she is about coffee.

Beach house

Last week wasn’t all bad.

My Love and I rented a tiny (600 square foot) beach house for the summer.

It’s a marvel of space efficiency. The bedroom is just big enough for the bed. The kitchen is just big enough for a Wolf range/convection oven, a sink, a refrigerator and four feet of counter space. The bathroom is just big enough for a sink, shower and toilet.

The rest of the house is one big room, extending all the way up to the roof. One wall is all windows, looking west over a cove of Long Island Sound. Sunsets are said to be spectacular.

An outdoor shower!

Hydrangeas. Roses. Beach roses. Daffodils. Daisies. Oaks and maples and cedars.

And lilacs! I love lilacs.

The town has a classic New England green, a classic New England Congregational church, a farmstand full of gorgeous produce and a bakery/espresso shop that makes an outrageous raspberry-corn muffin and an excellent espresso. The coffee shop roasts its own beans. My Love (who knows about these things) proclaims they’re the best she’s tasted.

The town also has an ice cream shop with the best ice cream either of us has ever eaten (and we are both ice cream connoisseurs). There’s a rumor that the best donuts in America are a little further up the coast.