When I was in college, I didn’t drink coffee. I remember my mom on occasion would tell me, “You’ll probably learn to like it someday–to be polite and social and to stay awake.”
Now, this was before caramel mocha frappachinos, dirty Chai tea lattes, iced vanilla macchiatos, and all such expensive, sweet and creamy coffee options.
The coffee of which my mom spoke, the coffee of the mid-twentieth century, was Folgers, or for those with highbrow tastes, 100% Columbian Yuban. Yuck! I refused to drink that to be polite.
I always took pride in the fact that her prediction did not come true. I married a coffee connoisseur, yet thirty years later I had never drunk a cup of coffee. I think I still managed to be polite. I drank water, herb tea, lemonade, milk, and Diet Coke, and I got along just fine in social situations.
Now that we are going to Bahrain, I revisited that prediction. My mom’s prophetic voice has come back to me. I am reminded that I am going to a place full of new cultures. Bahrain is an Arab country with many different peoples living and working there among the Bahrainis. I’m sure there will be all kinds of possibilities for drinking coffee and tea “to be polite and social and to stay awake,” as my mom said. I’m looking forward to participating fully in any hospitality and kindness shown to me.
And so, I did it. I drank my first cup of coffee. It was sweet and creamy and coffee-like. Keith made me a vanilla latte, and I drank it all. I even took a photo to commemorate the event.