Archive for November, 2007

The Coffee Pot

November 30, 2007


This morning I drunk coffee. Proper, freshly made black coffee. Right now, this feels like as notable an event in my Afghanistan life as I’m ever likely to write about.

There is a small but wonderful group of foreign aid workers in Chagcharan town, the centre of Ghor province. One of our number has seen sense and decided to leave Afghanistan. And so I have lost a friend but inherited a coffee pot.

He had told me before of the difficulties he faced teaching his cook how to use it; how not to leave it boiling for a couple of hours, how not to then reheat it. (This is known as ‘capacity building’ in the language of international development.) Forewarned, I ventured forth into our cook’s dingy domain to supervise the process, the ritual, the art of using this wonderful piece of Italian technology.

Now, I like green tea as much as any Afghan. But oh my, the joy of proper coffee, the first I’ve had in a long month. I’m humming with the caffeine induced thrill of it.