Magical Mornings ● POEM

There are mornings that are different

They feel like magic 

In the way that they resemble

No other mornings 

In the way that the coffee

Tastes a little bit more

But mostly in the way that they feel

Like the beginning 

Of something new

©Christina de Vries


I was thinking about enjoying myself…

A while back I had some time to spare between a couple of meetings. What do writers do when they have time to spare? They order coffee and sit down to write of course!

I ordered myself a double soy latte and the barista that served me did not yell “DOUBLE SOY LATTE” when it was done. And he didn’t yell out my name as a Starbucks barista would do. He told me (with the biggest smile) that my coffee was ready, then he really looked me in the eyes and said:

‘Enjoy yourself!’

It might not sound like much, but in the instant those words hit me I thought:

‘Yes! I deserve this! I deserve to indulge myself a little extra and I definitely will! THANK YOU for reminding me!’


In this day and age where it too often feels like time stretches too thin, the pressure gets to us all to be better, deliver perfectly, to compete (and win) and find time to everyone and everything, it’s way too easy to forget to slow down , enjoy the moment, to let go and to be mindful.

My life has been changing a lot the past few months, and to say that it’s been hectic would be an understatement for sure. But even though there’s been a lot going on (mostly with work) I’ve learnt a lot from it and really enjoyed every part of it. Getting into new routines, learning new things and facing new challenges. But in the blur of it all, I’ve forgotten to enjoy life as much as I usually do.

I haven’t been as present in those small moments of life that we so easily overlook and see as nothing but life passing by. Boy, how wrong are we to do so?!

Those moments are the ones that are really important to enjoy to the fullest! Those moments put together are what makes up our lives.

So wouldn’t you rather enjoy them than waste them?

So in the moment when I was handwriting this post in my notebook, I was listening to my favourite writing music, sipping on a delicious soy latte, making sure to really taste every flavour of it and doing this! The one thing that no matter how bad my day is or how sad I’m feeling, it completes me. Writing.

It’s the one thing that I enjoy no matter what, and I’m making sure that I enjoy it a little extra these days, just because the wonderful and serviceminded barista that served me, reminded me that I’ve earned the right to do so!

I hope gratitude got through to him, not only in my tip and words, but also through my eyes and smile.

Enjoy the small moments! They are your life!

Enjoy yourself!


Late Night Thoughts and Coffee Cups

For some reason I always end up staying up late, immersed in my own thoughts and creativity whenever I go back home to my parents for a visit. Could be the change of scenery or maybe just the comfort of being on home base that brings out something that’s been tucked away for a while. 

Some of it probably comes from the deep conversations I have with close family and friends when I come around. They bring a lot of subjects and thoughts to the surface that I rarely touch on with other people in my everyday life. This is something that I’m extremely grateful for and definitely always look forward to when I’m going home, but it also makes for a bit of a bitter sweet experience. Late nights of writing and endless coffee refills (not that I need it. I’m pretty much immune to caffeine at this point!) has become sort of a routine. 

Over the past few days I’ve had a mini-vacation back to my hometown just to have some quality time with my family and friends, and to recharge my batteries for the hectic time to come. These last couple of days can definitely be described as interesting. Not that there’s much to tell that would be of any interest to anyone else but me, but the experience in general has just been wonderful. A lot of meaningful conversations, new ideas, reconnected friendships and lots and lots of good coffee. I crave these kind of inputs in my life on a regular basis, to clear my head a bit and to see my life and thoughts from a different perspective. It’s healthy for me, and I think a lot of people could benefit from similar experiences. We all need to step back a little from time to time, to really be able to see where everything is going and to really be able to understand ones needs. We get so caught up in everyday life (nothing wrong with that! We all live it.) that we push away the important thoughts and questions, storing them for a later and “more convenient” time. But the very truth and essence of everyday life is that it is exactly that: YOUR LIFE! It’s not the time that you wait around for life to actually start happening. It’s not the time where everything that goes down is of less significance because the events aren’t huge! It’s the everydays that mounts up to the life that you choose to live. 

I don’t knoe about you guys, but sometimes I need a little reminder of exactly that. And that’s what I love so much about coming home to the important people in my life that I don’t have around me as often as I’d like, in my everyday life. 

So I take the late nights, the deep thinking, the laughter, the crying, the joy, the pain, the tough questions, the light hearted jokes and all the cups of coffee. I take them all with so much gratefulness. Because in my experience, the only ones who takes you on that ride and asks the tough questions (and really listen to your answers as well) are the ones who truly cares about your well-being. Those are the people that I need to recharge and rethink. 

And to you (come on! Don’t pretend you don’t know who you are): 

Thank you! 

I probably don’t say that enough! Thank you! 


Just a Cup of Coffee – a short story

Just a Cup of Coffee

“The café was scented with chocolate, freshly baked pastries and coffee. Oh the heavenly coffee. At “The Coffee Bean” it has been rumored for years that customers get exactly what they need. If you had a broken heart they would serve you the perfect espresso milkshake with a special touch that put a smile back on your face, or the perfect chocolate mousse cake that would draw out those tears that you were hiding so that you could move on.”

After twenty years of business the place had gotten on more lips than their coffee. Andrea Fitz, a young journalist for the The Times was writing a piece on the place. With her office skirt and perfect white shirt she looked out of place in the colorful and relaxed atmosphere of the room.
‘So what is it about your products that makes this place famous?’
She had an arrogance and disbelief in her voice that would make you want to slap her, not really knowing why. On the opposite side of the table you would find the complete opposite. Elise, the shop owner was the cutest grandmother you could ever wish for. She was a petite, but curvy woman in her late fifties, always wearing colorful dresses, one or more flowers in her white and wavy long hair, and always with a smile on her face. Even when she wasn’t smiling the corners of her mouth somehow pointed subtly upwards. Somehow the air around her seemed sweeter than everywhere else. One would think that when her sweet air met the bitter air around Andrea it would somehow combust, but something completely different happened.
Elise sipped her tea from a big blue cup and sat it back down on the table with a big smile on her face.
‘We make everything with an extra dose of..’ leaning in as if to tell a secret, Andrea leaned in ready to hear it, ‘.. Love!’
‘Of course.. Love.’ Even though she almost whispered it while taking her notes, the sarcasm was loud and clear. Elise didn’t mind, her smile actually grew a little wider.
‘Are you sure you don’t want anything? A cupcake or a cup of tea?’
You can’t buy me. Was Andrea’s immediate thought before swallowing it. How did I get like this?
‘You really can’t write a piece about our humble coffee house without having a taste of what we have to offer.’
‘Maybe later.’ She tries to smile but it doesn’t feel right and looks less genuine. ‘Some say that you use some kind of magic in here.’ Elise’s laugh rolls light heartedly in the air. ‘Some even speculate in use of drugs after all the stories that has shown up through the years.’
‘I can guarantee you that we’ve never used any kind of drugs in here.’ she almost giggles in between words.
The air around them somehow shifted. Andrea thought she felt it but ignored it none the less.
‘And magic?’
‘There’s magic to be found everywhere.’
‘So you’re not denying it?’
With the pen ready on the notepad she’s waiting for the headline of her article.
‘You look like you could some kind of magic.’ Elise sips the last of her tea.
‘No. I don’t believe in magic.’ Her head filled with pictures of unicorns, green witches and werewolves. She doesn’t need any magic either. She’s engaged to Alex, living in a beautiful penthouse apartment and working because she wanted to not because she had to. It wasn’t everything she thought it would be but she was happy, sure she was.
‘What about when he gets angry?’ Elise asks with a curious look. Her eyes are met with a look of utter surprise.
‘Come again?’
All that arrogance and bitterness washed away from her voice.
‘And there’s another man that sneaks into your thoughts more than you like? Someone who could have been maybe?’
Colin’s face flashes into her mind and the pen falls out of her hand. Elise picks it up from the floor and lays it on top of the notepad. Andrea’s heart is racing and she’s panting.
No one knows about these things. How can she know?
She wants to yell it out to her in anger, but it comes out as in insecure whisper.
‘How do you know all this?’
‘Maybe it’s magic?’ She takes Andrea’s left hand in hers as if she really were her grandmother. It felt surprisingly comforting, but being scared and in confusion she pulls her hand back.
‘Who are you?’
Elise gets up and walks over to the counter. As she turns she’s holding a big pink cup that she brings back to the table and sets in front of Andrea.
‘There, there child. I’m just a silly old woman who’s seen history repeats itself too many times in too many faces.’ She cocks her head to her left and gives Andrea a little wink, ‘Have som coffee now. It’s on the house.’
A piece of Andrea wants to run for her life. Run away from this smiling witch, but she has a deadline. She needs to write that story.
‘What’s in it?’ her voice shakes a little.
‘It’s a peppermint cappuccino with a hint of white chocolate.’
It smells heavenly.
‘I can’t remember seeing that on the menu.’
Elise sits down slowly. There’s something in her smile that Andrea doesn’t recognize.
‘It’s a mouthful of truth hon. Do you dare to drink it?’
Andrea’s hands folds around the the cup. It warms her, makes her curious and even more scared. The cuckoo clock on the wall starts the first of its three cuckoos when her lips touches the pink porcelain.

Everything around her is too bright. She can’t see anything that’s in front of her. The feeling of dizziness and nausea overwhelms her. And as the surroundings around her clears up she feels a warm hand in hers. A strong hand. As she turns her head, the silhouette of a man turns into clear view.
His hand squeezes hers again. It feels so different than the hand she’s used to. It feels like love.
‘Who else would it be hon?’ He smiles that tender smile. The big confident one that always reminded her of a young Tom Cruise. ‘Your other boyfriend?’
He laughs at his own joke.
Andrea’s heart is racing faster than she thought was ever possible as she throws her arms around him and kisses him. The feel of him, the taste and the smell feels so familiar. Like no time had passed at all since the last time she saw him, almost a decade ago.
‘I’ve missed you.’ tears are pushing their way to the surface while she hugs him harder than she’s ever hugged anyone.
‘I’ve missed you too.’ He kisses her neck, just like he used to. Goosebumps tickles down her back. She remembers this feeling so well. She feels warm. Happy. She feels loved. It’s as if he read her mind.
‘What you’re feeling right now Andrea, that’s real.’
She sighs.
‘But this moment isn’t, right?’ his big hand strokes her left cheek with the love that she’d been missing. Then he shakes his head and talks in a low whisper:
‘No. This is what could have been if different choices were made.’ Andrea feels like she’s going to faint, uncertain if this still is the perfect dream or if it’s now turned into a nightmare, ‘You cannot make a new choice for that crossroad now. That one is in the past. But what you’re feeling right now, you can have that again. You just have to take a leap of faith and you have to go look for it.’
Colin kisses her one more time and she hears the cuckoo again.

The third cuckoo. She’s back in her seat. Back at “The Coffee Bean” where no time has passed at all. Her confused eyes filled with tears falls down on the cup of coffee. She only remembers the first sip and yet there it is, empty.
This time she doesn’t pull her hand away as Elise puts it in hers.
‘That bitter sweet after taste in your mouth is the truth. It hurts to know that your what if had a better outcome than the road you chose. Now you need to choose another.’ She then gets up and put on that happy smile and a light purple apron.
‘I’ll make you a new coffee to go.’
Andrea could do nothing but nod and whisper thank you.

“I came to The Coffee Bean not knowing what to look for, but found a jewel in this so ever lost city. It’s a place to clear your mind, and even if your going alone you’ll be in good company from a lovely and passionate staff.
The truth is there. And the truth is simple:
You never know what can happen over just a cup of coffee.

– Andrea Fitz”

Written by Christina de Vries, January 2013

The Fascinating World of Coffee

I worked as a barista for some years and I’ve always been fascinated about coffee and all that surrounds it.

Did you know that European shepherds first noticed the effects of caffeine when their goats started to act up and “dance” after eating coffee berries.

The coffee beans are actually seeds inside of berries that grows on trees.


Originally coffee was eaten by African tribes who mixed the berries with fat.

In 1675 the King of England banned coffee houses, claiming they were places where people met to conspire against him.


Coffee is the second most traded commodity on earth. Oil is the first.

A lethal dose of caffeine is roughly 100 cups of coffee.

In the ancient Arab culture there was only one way a woman could legally divorce :
If her husband didn’t provide enough coffee.


In Italy the average barista age is 48, and it’s a very respected profession.

Caffeine can not help you to sober up.

Brewed espresso contains 2,5% fat, while filtered coffee has 0,6% fat.


Irish coffee was actually invented to warm up cold American plane passengers leaving from Ireland.

There you go, some facts about coffee. And now I have to go and make myself a cup.
All this coffee writing has made me thirsty!