It is perfect right now, this moment, this time. The sun is rising over the Chesapeake Bay, outside my window, and I am up early, curled in the big chair, lapping up a steaming milkbowl full of home-roasted coffee, frothed with hugh amounts of a rich half coconut cream, half Amish heavy whipping cream. I buy big burlap bags of beautiful green coffee beans, and pan-roast them in a cast iron skillet, an old friend of a pan, my pal for decades. It takes me eighteen to twenty one minutes to roast the beans, and I roast twice a week. The stove, hardly more than a toy, is a compact cream and black 1936 Magic Chef, as low tech and darling as it can be. We got it years ago, for a song. It had been gathering dust in someone’s basement, and they were delighted for us to put it to good use. I adore doing repetitive simple tasks, and dipping my measuring bowl into the big bag, heating the pan just right, stirring and watching the beans turn from jade green to the deepness of complex shades of brown I deem each batch should be. It pops and crackles and smokes, and I quickly pour it from pan to a huge metal colander, and scurry it outside, on the front steps of our little cottage, for it to cool and give off smoke. Once cooled, the beans are transfered to a little deco tin canister and left to breathe overnight, before grinding and brewing in a siphon pot. Then poured into a happy bright bowl I cup with both hands, after frothing with the thick custom cream, I curl in the beat up mohair chair and count my blessings. I will bring a big mug to Doc, along with kisses, as soon as I hear him stir. And so it has been, year after year, my little lot in life. The practicalities of simple tasks and humble living, heaping layer upon layer of imprinted reality of what life is, and, for me, it is perfect. Doc often wakes up laughing, and keeps me laughing throughout the day. These bits of laughter, with his awful jokes and every changing nicknames for me, and far too much chatter, and dancing in the kitchen, and the smell of his neck, all the layers and years of these tiny bits, are the foundation we build the rest of our life upon. The lilacs are in bloom, and I am so excited to get outside today. We are finishing building a privacy fence to hide a work area where Doc’s less that attractive vintage car parts, piles of rusty things under tarps, can be hidden from view. Yesterday, a good number of hours were spent taking turns drilling into the old concrete patio, to anchor posts. It was hard, repetitive work, and I was in heaven doing it. Doc was in heaven making me so happy. I tried to do as much as I could, and I think it was impressive, but he did much more of it, darn him. Still, I did a lot! My hand may be little and pale, and the tips painted red, but they are strong, and working with them is my joy. I am happier with a paint brush in hand than just about anything else.
So on I go, to my day, functioning more than fine. On Sunday I must attend a social function, and it will take all I have in me to do that. I may shut down and lose days, even if it is a wonderful get together, which I am sure it will be. I will make the effort, and no one will know, except Doc, and now you, how hard it will be. But I won’t think about that now, for, right now, this moment, is perfect, and I will dwell in that completely. Good morning, Darlings. Coffee?