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Published: November 29th 2016
There is no question one of the things we love the most about aa overseas trip is the opportunity to slow things down and observe the world. When we travel, we have the chance to sit back, breathe and actually savor moments like meals or coffee breaks.
We are able to set the pace so that we can drop everything for high tea or just plop down at a cafe to chat and soak in the surroundings.
If doesn't take an expert in human behavior to deduce that we really like to enjoy our meals. Yes, we like food. We like the process. We like the novelty of new foods. We like the comfort of good food. We like the culture of meal times. And, yes, we like the consumption!
Kyle likes to joke that dad and I love our 3 hour breakfasts...okay, maybe he isn't joking as you might imagine it takes a little more effort for Kyle to slow his pace. But, in a sense he is right about us being able to sit for long periods of time eat or drink.
Whenever we travel, dad's mission is to find the best cup of coffee,
which is a fun mission. Unless he gets a bad cup of coffee. In those instances, his diplomacy can be tested.
At one of our stops, an establishment attempted to serve instant coffee and some of the other guests were lamenting the lousy coffee. Dad had them convinced that in America it is against the constitution to serve instant coffee to even prisoners. He claimed it was considered cruel and unusual punishment!
At another place guilty of serving instant coffee, dad gently coaxed the chef to serve pressed coffee. The chef willingly obliged and the next morning, six different guests at the farmstay thanked him for saving them all from instant coffee. He became a quick hero.
Many of the places we stayed did not serve breakfast or coffee as early as dad is used to in the morning. He adjusted well and sometimes even slept until 6:30 am (which is a big deal for Mr. Early Riser). At Vanilla County, they did not plan on breakfast until 8 am or later and there was no place to get coffee since we were no where near the city.
The owner had a routine of getting up
early to go to mass every morning and picked up on dad's pattern, so he left a coffee press with ground coffee on a table near dad's room every morning. Dad repaid the favor by being on the veranda to retrieve the morning papers the moment they were delivered.
It may not come as a big surprise that dad found the best cup of coffee at Orange County, the coffee plantation. Our bungalow had a coffee press along with a supply of coffee that was grown on the plantation. When dad went to make his morning coffee, he noticed the kettle to heat the water was already filled with the exact amount of water needed to fill the press. He also noticed after he made coffee in the morning, the kettle and coffee were refilled multiple times per day. Talk about service!
Dad was pleased when he discovered that Camp Bliss had upgraded to pressed coffee, which was not an option four years ago when we stayed there.
The greatest struggle to get a great cup of coffee was in the Maldives. This was a bit shocking since the intricate buffet seemed to have foods and flavors
to meet every person's liking. Dad tried asking for black coffee, turkish coffee and arabic coffee, but somehow he wasn't communicating effectively. We thought we had solved the issue when we took one of the small coffee presses to our table to make his own coffee only to discover the presses were filled with tea, not coffee! They had more than a dozen different types of tea, but couldn't make a solid cup of coffee. One morning it was so bad, he was only drinking tea. Yikes.
I appreciate the ritual of savoring a good cup of coffee, but I tend to prefer tea. My favorite is masala tea, but that seemed much more available in northern India. Once we landed in the southern part of India, it seemed like all tea was either offered black or with milk. This is probably due to the strong British influence.
The photos included with this blog are just a random collection of all the places we enjoyed a cup of coffee or tea. These are the various places we were able to slow down and enjoy the world around us.
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