June 2011

Following an enjoyable double birthday celebration over lunch last week I was fascinated to hear our friend order in precise detail exactly how she wanted her coffee.

She went onto explain….”My morning coffee is a ritual of spiritual significance. My noisette/machiatto has to have a chocolate consistency, hence Mokolito at my regular cafe. It must not have foam but enough hot milk poured in to make it the colour of a hazelnut, and most importantly it has to be strong and hot… perfecto. I have two cups a morning and that kickstarts the celebrated wires to start sparking into action for the day.” ;}

While we were inMilanI heard that my Father in Law, not a person to mince words or suffer fools, always insisted on an espresso  with just 16 drops, no more, no less.

I love it when people are very clear exactly how they enjoy their coffee … what type of cup, the mouth feel, colour, smell as well as taste……

The right mixture to produce the … “Ah… just so”……moment.


We’ve been away since my last post in April anticipating coffee in Milan but more of that  soon.

In the meantime I note that today Brazilian Maria Gomes Valentim the world oldest person has died aged 114!

Shortly after we left on our travels on 14th April Walter Breuning, the World’s oldest man died in Montana aged 114.

It seemed appropriate to pay tribute to these two folks in a blog focusing upon Coffee and Change (and Age) as apparently last month, Maria Valentim, who was known as Grandma Quita, attributed her longevity to a healthy diet: eating a roll of bread every morning with coffee, fruit and the occasional milk with linseed.

In an interview last autumn, Walter Breuning attributed his longevity to eating just two meals a day, working as long as he could and always embracing change, especially death.

After moving into a retirement home in the 1980s, Breuning spent his time just talking. Here’s a bit of advice he left for generations to come:

  • “I think every change that we’ve ever made, ever since I was a child – 100 years – every change has been good for the people. My God, we used to have to write with pen and ink, you know, (for) everything. When the machines came, it just made life so much easier.”
  • “Life begins each morning whether we have succeeded or failed or just muddled along. Life is a school to learn, not to unlearn.”

Farewell fellow coffee and change devotees….