addiction starter-set...

it was warm around here for a whole couple days, so now people are  dancing through the streets, burning their insulated coats, and singing songs about Spring.

however, as it looked like this just a week ago, i am (decidedly) still not convinced.

truth be told, i had a really rough Winter, so i am definitely looking forward to Spring... once i convince myself that it is finally here. i have no idea how people handle life at even higher latitudes, as that 'Winter gloom' is really hard to bear, especially when your mood tends toward gloom on even the best of days. so, while there is a lot of rain in the forecast (it rained all day), there should be plenty of sunshine ahead.

it occurred to me recently that i have a habit of mentioning stuff in this forum, with the claim that i will talk more about it "next time around"... by which point, i am on to some wholly unrelated topic. so, i want to make a concerted effort in the next few posts to revisit some of that already-forgotten stuff. that is, if i can remember what i intended to say in the first place. this will not end well. trust me.

last time around, i mentioned that i had been drinking Turkish coffee. well, that part remains true. i have been drinking Turkish coffee...

and drinking Turkish coffee...

and drinking even more Turkish coffee.

it is his mom's preferred hot beverage, so she is most enthusiastic to get me addicted to the stuff. she even gifted me the pair of handmade mini cup-and-saucer sets she bought back when they lived in France (where my favorite animator was born). so, like many many... manyyy years ago.

note the checkered coat of arms from the Croatian flag on the side of the cup. i thought Caribbean folks were ridiculous with the constant need to display flags on everything, regardless of where we may have drifted to in the diaspora. turns out Croatians are just the same.

me: i thought she got them in France.
him: she did.
me: but it has a Croatian flag on it.
him: everything has a Croatian flag on it.  
me: that is true.

it should be noted that i usually drink hot beverages from my bucket-sized mug of wonderment, so this little cup is like something to rest the teabag in after a good steep.

so tiny. so cute.

the cups and saucers have only ever lived behind the glass doors of a china cabinet, so you know it was a big deal for them to be placed in my care. i used them exactly TWO times before nerves got the best of me. so now i mostly look at them from a safe distance, with admiration... and with fear. 

as a result, most of my Turkish coffees have been sipped from either one of the small glass cups we got as free gifts inside packets of tea from the Middle Eastern grocery store.

or, from one of the several Batman mugs knocking around our home. everyone i know has a few of these things. Batman Forever may have been a train wreck, but boy do i (still) love these mugs! this particular one is The Joker.

the hardest part of making Turkish coffee is developing that lovely creamy layer on the top. this, according to all of the You Tube videos i watched on the subject, is considered to be an essential part of the drink. there is no dairy involved, so it takes a bit of practice (and patience) to figure out that part.

luckily, my favorite animator—who, i might add, does not drink coffee—was most supportive in encouraging me to make as many cups as was necessary to get it right. the early efforts were pathetic. the cat is closing her eyes in shame.

getting better, sorta.

i eventually got the hang of thing. i actually had to blow a little opening in the creamy layer to show the contrast with the coffee.

it should be noted that Turkish coffee (left) is ground super-fine and has a texture approaching cocoa powder, while the coffee i use in my French press (right) looks more like burnt coarse cornmeal. random aside: i have been on a super-dark-roast kick of lately, so my "regular" coffee looks like pulverized charcoal.

additionally, the ground Turkish coffee is usually added directly to the water. they even make special pots for it. they look like metal corn cob pipes. this one was part of my addiction starter-set. note the pen for scale. my starter-set also included a bag of her favorite ground coffee. the woman is thorough in her enabling.

water, sugar (totally optional), and the ground coffee are added to the pot, which is placed on the burner. when the coffee is ready to go, the whole thing is poured into the cup. the fine grounds settle at the bottom of the cup, so you leave that bit behind when drinking the coffee.

so, now i am back to being hooked on coffee... again. last time around, it took a couple years to break the addiction, and i managed to develop a few even-more-absurd habits along the way. but that is a story that i will save for some other day.


  1. I agree about Dubious Spring. The jonquils have finally appeared, the lilac bush is giving itself a rupture trying to outdo itself with leaves, and there is actually grass out there. Sort of. But I will not give in to putting the screen sash in the storm door. No. No. Everytime I rush that, we get a blizzard two days later.
    It's been a long hard winter for just about everyone, whatever they're used to, this was more. way too much more.

    To help your coffee addiction guilt along, it has been decided or discovered that coffee can be GOOD for you, yes indeed. It really does help your thought processes, and keeps the brain humming along nicely.

    I suffer from winter depression too, and someone suggested that Vitamin D can help that. It does help a great deal, since you and I live in places that are dark more than they're light, in the winter, and only a fool would try to sit buck naked on the porch in midwinter, and this is the stuff that makes the difference.

    1. i would like to think that you and i are exercising basic common sense when it comes to being a bit reserved in heralding in the start of Spring. the locals here, however, tend to treat any day without snow like it was Summer. there is always that week or two when i am still reaching for my light coat, while most people around me are already in short-sleeves.

      we are low-to-moderate users of dairy products. a supplement would definitely help, as my vitamin D levels are probably near non-existent most days. i have a comical mental image of me standing on the balcony in mid-Winter, trying to get some sun. our weather forecasts usually include a warning about how long (usually measured in seconds) it will take for exposed skin to freeze, so that would not end well.

  2. And where you come from a place where the sun DO shine a lot, your body is genetically structured for lots and lots of sun. I've been taking D3 for years and it really makes a difference.

    We live 'up' from the rest of the town, about 10 degrees worth, temperature wise. When I go out with intent to shop, I have to do some mental gymnastics to make sure I have the right layers of winter stuff on to get out to the car without frostbite setting in, but not so many that when I get to town I don't look like the old hermit lady dressed in scarves and six sweaters and big boots, in temperatures that are now well above freezing...

    1. i am not really much of an outdoors type, aside from time spent gardening, but having sunlight streaming through windows really does make a big difference in my mood most days. i don't even mind the really cold, snowy part of Winter, just as long as there is some sun. however, when it gets to that overcast, grey, grim part of things, and that lingers for weeks at a time, that is when my mood takes the biggest dip. luckily, it is bright and sunny today. things are looking up.