Coffee Storm in the Tea Cup
by Dhanya Narayanan
I am an out and out coffee lover and remained so all through my life. No amount of pressures and health promises from the dark green tea leaves never tempted me and I continued as a loyal fan of the coffee. At home I invariably go for the rich, thick and steaming filter coffee. I add instant coffee powder to a hot, foaming cup of choclate for a quick pick me up on lashing monsoon days.
I always demanded the hot brown liquid wherever I go. Though demure and docile in style and manner, my voice turn aggressive when I ask for my favourite brew. Amidst the tea drinkers if I don't get coffee, I stick to water. May be this strong resolve might have impressed people. Slowly I got my way.
But in my office the determination proved futile. "I can't serve coffee" the canteen manager insisted one day.
"And why not?" I was not ready to be put off that easily.
"It is the new rule of the HR. Coffee is only for guests." He told sheepishly.
The boy who served coffee regularly listened all this as a mute spectator.
"In that case don't bother to send me tea. I don't drink tea" I said haughtily.
I was seething with anger and humiliation.
The manager looked uncomfortable and walked away.
It was the boy's turn.
"Don't worry chechi. I will fix coffee for you. Nobody will know."
First I was apprehensive about the furtive mission but it turned out to be a grand success. The boy was quite adept. I enjoyed my hot decotion right infront of the unsuspecting HR department.
But when the boy went on leave our plans toppled. The substitute was not so dexterous. Though he was trained meticulously he spilled the beans.
A furious HR manager came running and demanded an explanation. "It's a matter of discipline" He roared inviting some interesting and amused gazes around the office and hurried to add "coffee beans are the second most expensive item in the world" pointing, no doubt the financial burden to the company.
I simply said " I love coffee. You can either give me coffee or nothing." I was resolute in my decision.
To my utter surprise and disbelief, a warm smile lit his face. " OK. Have your way".
"You know one thing, I am a chronic coffee lover but a compelled tea drinker" He winked at me conspiratorially before turning away.
He joined in my silent, lone battle and within no time other caffeine lovers barged in. Finally it was coffee time for us.
And my coffee saga goes on.