“Coffee is the balm of heart and spirit”. – Giuseppe Verdi
Would You Like Some Coffee In Bed?
In Italy – as in most Western countries – a day begins with a cup of good coffee. And here – quite spontaneously – I can not help myself mentioning the famous phrase of Helen Oyeyemi. “The first coffee of the morning is never, ever, ready quickly enough”. I guess the idea is so common to most of us!
Known since the eighteenth century as the “intellectual drink”, coffee represents an intrinsic part of the Italian culture and creativity. The Italians know: behind every big day, there is a cup of good coffee! Actually, more than one…
Appreciated all over the world, coffee for Italians is not just a pleasant attribute of the morning, but rather a lifestyle (just as wine or food, though differently). It is a simple but essential ritual that is repeated several times a day signing the unique and important moments, sometimes quick but always intense. Even on the most hectic days, the Italians never give up drinking coffee. On the other hand, according to Totò (Antonio De Curtis): “To have a cup of coffee and to cheat on wife there is always time.”
But let’s get back to coffee…
Coffee: from Dawn till Dusk
Many Italians prefer to have their first cup of coffee at the bar, talking to the bartender, people they know or even to the perfect strangers. For the bright or timid ones, the first coffee of the morning is a great opportunity for the first “quick” date that allows to lay the foundations for a real one or even a love story. Also, it’s time for morning gossip, mind awakening, social curiosity and fresh emotions. As if the first cup of coffee was that magical push-button of psycho-physical initiation capable to raise the music inside us and fix the mood colour in the background of our consciousness throughout the day.
Then, at midday the Italians have a coffee break. For some Italians it represents a perfect chance to get back to the bar and meet the people of their interest. This way, an Italian coffee break is often also used as a “mini” business appointment. For many others, instead, it’s a perfect time for relax and to unofficially discuss business or personal issues, as well as to talk about “Le Iene”, “Big Brother” or “X-Factor”.
However, for creative Italians a coffee break represents the unique dimension where speech creates reality, the magic place where giant dreams and strategic plans arise without leaving the office. As if they were a living proof of how much Heinrich Eduard Jacob had stated: “The discovery of coffee was, in its own way, as important as the invention of the telescope or the microscope. Coffee has unexpectedly intensified and modified the capabilities and vivacity of the human brain”.
In The End of The Day…
Moreover, the Italians drink their third – or fourth! – cup of coffee after lunch just to lengthen the pleasure. Few hours later, most of them upload themselves with more coffee – in order “recharge” vital energies. Finally, sometimes the Italians drink their last cup of coffee after dinner – this time, to give the right touch to the evening. After all, they know that all women share the thought of Susan Savannah: “Men are like coffee. The best ones are rich, hot, and can keep you up all night“.
What is your coffee experience lasting from dawn till dusk…or vice versa? Share…