September 05, 2009

Water woes and a coffee cure...

Well, one more step in my evolution. To shake off that green coating of the south, there are a few levels of experiential initiation. On a superficial level, they vary from person to person...some people have to adjust to no Starbucks, Tim Horton's, or McDonalds while others have to get used to the fact that movie theaters, good middle eastern food, and standard veterinary care is unavailable. I can do without the Starbucks (too expensive anyway) and McD's (you can only be 'lovin it' for so long), but the others I know I will miss immensely in the upcoming months...oh ya, and a nice glass of wine. Those things, however, are personal.

No...true experiential initiation comes when you go through an airport with no security check-point, land on a gravel runway, walk through the Northern or the Co-op for the first time...and for the true first shock, getting ready for a shower and realizing that you used your last few drops of water for that absolutely luscious pot of coffee you just made. Ok, I know they'll be many more things to deal with that will probably be a lot worse, but I was really looking forward to that shower. I suppose I should feel lucky that it's a Saturday afternoon and not a weekday morning before work.

Anyway, after letting the phone ring and ring and ring at the water/sewage place I felt like I was going to cry. Would I have to run to the neighbor's just to use the bathroom? On about the 15th ring (no joke) someone finally picked up. Yay! The guy said they were on break right now but would make it over as soon as possible. That was about 45 minutes ago and now I'm already set with a brand new tank - so quick! Scarlett was running around barking the whole time and Gryphon, again, was shaking and terrified (thank god his bowels were empty this time), but it's finished and full. Now the drill is to run the washing machine, right? Or is that after they do the sewer? Do they do both at once? Oh, I should've figured this one out before Labour Day weekend!

Enough with the sewer talk and back to the coffee. Today I decided to put away the Bridgehead pre-ground Peruvian I had been drinking for the past week and try out my fancy new Cuisinart coffee grinder on the Free Trade East Timorese beans I had waiting in that required 'cool dry place' (freezers is an evil myth people). Absolutely beautiful. I don't know enough about coffee to describe the subtle tones of whatever's involved, but I know what's good and what's not. It was a medium roast - no too bitter or acidic (hate that) -and it convinced me that the money I spent bringing premium caffeine north was well-spent. Regardless of the fact that a guy I know said I'd be "Nabobin' it by Christmas", I don't think I could make that change if something like food mail is available. I have a few more bags of upopened beans in various flavours to tide me over till American Thanksgiving at least!


Clare said...

A good source for beans is which roasts near Ottawa. They roast on Tuesday, ship on Wednesday, and its free shipping if you're on a recurring order. All fair trade/organic. Also try Transcend Coffee out of Edmonton, free shipping if you order 2 lbs of one kind. Good sustainable coffees, usually estate coffees, a lot of Cup of Excellence. Also for coffee and environment issues, I can't recommend highly enough my friend Julie's Coffee and Conservation Blog ( Julie knows her coffee, and wades effortlessly through sustainability issues.

Tara Muise said...

Thanks for the tip! I was hoping to find a place that ships for free. How would know that you'll be a recurring customer on your first order? Pay for shipping the first time?

Clare said...

You can set it up on the website as a recurring order, you can even change the frequency and beans you order. For some reason the website decided it didn't like me after awhile, but I got it all sorted out on the phone and they ship without my going through the website. Both they and Transcend have shown me excellent customer service.

BTW, if you use a regular home coffee maker (drip) to make your coffee, consider getting a Technivorm (I bought mine at Transcend but there are other Canadian sources) or using a French Press. Most home coffee makers do not get the water hot enough and you miss out on much of the coffee's flavour.