Hi all! Happy Sunday. I’m in the process of packing up my flat in London ahead of a temporary move back to my parent’s house in Southampton, at least for December. I’m writing from my room, surrounded by half-packed boxes and so in the interests of making some progress this morning, I’m going to make today’s edition slightly briefer.
I’ve dug out 5 cool and/or interesting photos featuring coffee that I thought would be nice for everyone to look at of a Sunday afternoon.
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“Hot Coffee” in the Mojave Desert, Arizona, USA
I’ve had this image as a print on my bedroom wall for a few years now, but only recently did I decide to try and read into it a little more. According to Art Institute Chicago, it was photographed by Edward Weston in 1937, but that’s the sum of what I could find. I imagine, though, that there is a nearby outlet selling coffee and this enormous coffee cup is intended to catch the eye of weary travellers who might wish to stop by. I love it.
Friends meet at Central Perk
I’m surprised it’s taken me this many newsletters to make my first reference to probably the world’s most famous coffee shop, Central Perk. We’ll know more about what has become of it when the Friends reboot finally happens in 2021, but if it’s survived soaring New York rents and a COVID lockdown, I’m sure that sofa is still just as coveted as it was when Friends ended in 2004. I suspect that now, you are likely to see a few more laptops on tables and headphone-clad coffee drinkers, but Central Perk will surely remain the perfect embodiment of a meeting place where friends can grab a coffee and come and go.
Espresso at zero-gravity
Here’s the first Italian woman in space, Samantha Cristoforetti (@AstroSamantha), drinking an espresso (or ISSpresso) aboard the International Space Station in 2015. The Italian coffee company, Lavazza, worked with the Italian Space Agency to produce an espresso machine to be fitted on the station. On the day Samantha made her first brew, Lavazza tweeted; “Today the International Space Station feels a little more like home”, which I thought was nice.
A snapshot of Ethiopia’s coffee ritual
This beautiful photo taken by Steve McCurry in Amaro gives a perfect look at the coffee ritual that takes throughout each day across Ethiopia. I explored this ritual a little in a previous edition of this newsletter, spotlighting coffee in Ethiopia. In the background, you can see the woman using the Jabana, a clay kettle, to pour coffee into small cups. The coals used to boil the coffee has an incense-like scent and fills the air, complementing the taste of the coffee.
This is a pit stop in many cases, for friends to drop in and sit briefly to talk. I wonder which of the seats in this image are coveted like Central Perk’s sofa? I think it’s the wall seats at the back - great to lean against and they come with two nice tables.
Coffee fuels the U.K.’s brilliant National Health Service
Here’s a group of staff from Croydon Hospital in south London. Before the pandemic, they will have had to contend with years of underfunding and over-working so as the pandemic hit throughout this year, as a small token of appreciation (beyond clapping on our doorsteps each Thursday night), some good people set up the NHS Coffee Appeal to buy coffee machines and supplies for busy wards across the U.K. and turn the clapping into the coffee. Wonderful stuff. Thanks to the people from the NHS Coffee Appeal for this great initiative, and thanks to everyone working within the NHS. I hope you all get a pay rise, one day, at least.
That’s all for this week. I hope you enjoyed it. Not even a Fourth Quarter section to write, SORRY! It’ll be back next Sunday. I really need to get on with some packing. Have a great rest of your Sunday. Love, Ashley x