Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Can't Live Without That Morning Joe

I don’t know about you but the first thing I think of in the morning when I get up is coffee. I must have a cup of that hot steaming black liquid in my hand as an impetus to the balance of the day. It gets me going, helps me think, and in the recent freezing weather, yes, freezing to me, it warms me up. I’ve tried cocoa and tea, but somehow neither one measures up to hot black coffee. I keep it healthy by having only one cup per day.

Last Tuesday morning was no different. Although Mopsy’s breakfast comes first because of the constant meowing, that cup of black coffee is number one priority. I have a small French Press which lets me make it in record time. I don’t need to wait for perking or the drip drip drip through the coffee maker. All I need is one spoonful of grounds and one cup of hot water and presto, three to four minutes later I have the perfect brew.

So Tuesday morning as usual the first thing I do is heat the water which I accomplish in the microwave. I fill my glass measuring cup with the required one cup measure, place it in the microwave, and hit the beverage button. The light comes on, the countdown from 2 minutes and 30 seconds begins, and I hear the thump thump drum of whatever that gadget inside is as it completes its intended job.

Meanwhile, I dump the spoonful of grounds into the glass press and get my prepared overnight oats and yogurt from the fridge. Two spoonfuls of yogurt and a quick mix, and my breakfast is almost ready. At just about this second in my morning activity, the microwave sounds off its three beeps telling me my coffee water is hot. I open the door and as my hand nears the glass measuring cup, I feel like there is something wrong. I touch it and it’s barely warm. Oh no, my ancient microwave has finally died. I’m not only devastated at not having hot water for my coffee, I feel like I have lost one of my best friends because it’s been my loyal hard-working companion for such a long time.  Well, I can’t complain. It’s been how many years? So long I can’t remember.

Realizing the microwave is not going to do it for me this morning, I grab the tea kettle, pour in the one cup of lukewarm water and turn on the stove burner, the smallest one so it will heat the quickest, but still minutes slower than the microwave. Sometime later, with coffee made and oats in hand, I progress to my breakfast station in front of the computer. I’m thinking, jeez, I can’t wait this long for hot water, I’ll have to find a new microwave today. So as soon as I’m finished eating and drinking, I’m web surfing to find a new one, Amazon, Home Depot, K-Mart, Walmart, Target, the list goes on.

With the coffee finally waking up my brain, I begin to wonder why the water was lukewarm if the microwave is dead. Does a microwave work a little bit as it dies, putting its all into that one last effort? Do those invisible waves bounce around a little slower and only do some of their job? That doesn’t sound right. Maybe I need to find the instruction booklet and see what it says about that. Searching for instructions for a microwave that is who knows how old takes some time, but as a person who never throws away important papers, eventually I have it in hand. I skim over the ‘if something goes wrong’ pages but see nothing that might apply to my problem of lukewarm water so I go back to the beginning of the booklet.
Operating Instructions, changing power levels. I read on and find that Power Level Hi is for boiling liquids. I don’t ever remember changing power levels and the booklet says Hi is the factory setting unless manually changed. Hmmmm. I prepare another cup of water, place it in the microwave, follow the instructions for setting the power level to Hi and press Beverage. And guess what, my water comes out coffee ready. And to think I was already picturing how I was going to heave my poor old microwave into the trash container.

As I continue to use old faithful for all my microwave needs, it hasn’t let me down. I don’t have to set the power level, “it” knows all on its own. I can only guess a power surge or some other blip in the electricity confused its brain, but between a cup of coffee and my human brain, my microwave’s life has been renewed and it continues serving me in its familiar spot on my kitchen counter.

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