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February 7, 2006

Is not the dark, rich scent of brewing coffee one of the most sublime olfactory pleasures? Nothing like a cup of Lonely Monk coffee, the morning paper, and the quiet of pre-dawn winter mornings.

I did not always like coffee. I developed a taste for coffee in my early twenties. Working for D.D. Derstine insulation, we would make it a habit to stop in Souderton, at some deli, and pick up our coffees (two creams, two sugars) and a white-iced cinnamon donut. This was my entre into the coffee-drinking world. Nothing like the soothing warmth of the caffeinated beverage on a cold winter day that held the prospect of 9-10 hours working in frigid tempuratures. Days spent emptying bags of shredded, treated newspaper (with superior R-value to fiberglass and much more pleasant to work with) into the mixer that blew the gusting storm of paper and chemicals to their final destination in the walls of the house. On their way out the hose, they would pass through a spray on the end of the hose, thus helping them cake onto the wall between the studs. If a heater was running inside the house under construction, a welcome job was the shaving of the walls down to the studs, scooping up the excess insulation into barrels and hauling the once-used mix out to the truck to be recycled in with the dry product right out of the bags.

Then there were those times of being at table with my friends in Mexico, drinking café con leche, eating some pan dulce or tamales that had been purchased fresh from a street vendor. Esto es la riqueza que es beber café.

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