Sherlock Holmes had his pipe. Dorothy had her red shoes. Batman had his Batmobile. If we asked your friends what object they most immediately associate with you, what would they answer?
If any object could be described as my “signature” object, it would have to be a cup of coffee. Rarely would you find me without a cup sitting by my side, at until mid-morning. But unlike a fictional character who only drinks coffee grown in the Blue Mountains of Jamaica from their custom designed coffee cup, nothing about my coffee habits would strike anyone as distinctly “Susan”.
I am a typical, non-discriminating coffee drinker. As long as it is hot, I’m happy. While most of my coffee-drinking friends cringe at the thought of drinking anything not specially brewed by Starbucks, I am not so picky. My special brew comes in a plastic red container from the middle shelf of my local grocery store and the cup I drink from is nothing more than one of a dozen or so mis-matched mugs bought over the years because of the catchy phrases imprinted on the front. When it comes to coffee, give me your basic brand, no frills or thrills. Which makes me one boring fictional character.
If I were a fictional character, I would probably be a tea drinker. Maybe tea drinkers are more interesting. I most identify with Precious Ramotswe, the lady detective in the popular Alexander McCall Smith series, “No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency”. For Mma Ramotswe, a cup of bush tea welcomes the morning. Tea creates the bond with her worried clients, providing comfort and familiarity. When faced with a challenge that needs pondering, tea provides the perfect distraction to free her mind .
Coffee does the same thing for me. My first morning cup is more than a wake-me-up drink. It’s my initiation into a brand-new day. I sit on my front porch, absorbing the stillness of the morning, listening as the crows call to each other with their ‘caw caw’. I watch the sky turn salmon pink, with wisps of blue as the sun lifts over the horizon. For a few short minutes, I am blinded by its brilliance, until it passes behind the trees in my east side yard. I drink coffee and quiet my mind before the rest of the world wakes up and realizes what they are missing. The warm cup feels good against my cheek and heat radiates from the cup, through my hands and up my arms. I drink in gratitude with each sip.
The good thing is , I don’t need a signature blend. Folgers will do just fine.