I bumped into an auld fella at the bus stop last week. Short, half hunched over, half a major burning away in his hand. He was wearing an old, patchwork jacket and a flat cap. He saw my Cork City jersey and we started chatting. Now, I didn’t let on to him I know sweet feck all about the team bar a few of the players and the fact that the season has been poor. The conversation really got going as soon as he asked what I was drinking. The answer, ‘A mocha with whipped cream’, sent him into a frenzy.
All I know about him is that his name is Barry, and he is, “Cork city born, bred and raised, boi.”
Yerra, it was far from mochas and cappucinos and lattes I was raised! Back in my day if you asked me for a cup of coffee I wouldn’t know what you were talking about! All we had was tea and boiling water. Now, there’s all sorts of coffee and different types and blends and what have you. There’s even coffee cake! Coffee feckin’ cake?! When will it end? If you got a glass of water for your birthday and you got let off without a belt to the back of the legs you’d be happy. And my daughter the other day asking me to go halves on a French-press coffee maker for the young one. I will in me French-press go halves! Off to Dunnes and buy some Maxwell House. Maxwell will sort ye out or I will. “How much is it anyways?”, I asked. 20 euros! “Away! Out of my sight”, I said to her. If I ever spend more than 3 euro on coffee I’ll have broken a bond to the coffee from Maxwell’s house. When her Mother, God rest her, sent me to the coal quay for a slab of instant coffee I nearly had her brought to St. Michael’s to be checked in! Coffee, I kept saying, is a ploy by the British to get back in and start another famine. We’ll become so dependent on the stuff that one day, there’ll be a coffee bean blight and you, my daughter, her young one and the rest of the hipsters in their beanies will perish. Ye’ll be talked about in history books. Away now, and don’t be bothering me.
Now, I am partial to the odd Americano. I couldn’t tell you the difference between an Americano and a mocha, except for the feckin’ price. 5 euro for hot chocolate with whipped cream inside in that Costa coffee?? Costa feckin’ lot of money, so it does. I might have to branch into town and see what they have on offer. My grandson is always on about Gloria’s Jeans. I think there’s a coffee place next to her clothes shop. Or else he’s staring at women named Gloria without a morsel of remorse, the little prick. Anyways, thanks for the chat. What was your own name? Dalton? You’re not from Cork anyways, boy. I’ll chat to you again, best of luck!