Ambitiously, I hoped to continue blogging regularly when I first arrived here in Jordan. I wrote these two incomplete paragraphs three months ago:
It has been six days since I got here. After spending the first day or so observing the customs and behaviours, I threw myself in at the most important end of the spectrum: Coffee.
I found the metal jug, filled it with water, placed it on the gas (which is evil in this 40 degree heat), and waited for it to boil.
I’m told that this family consume more coffee than most, and in five days we have used 2 kilos.
It has now been 70 days since I arrived in Jordan, and I’ve got some more to say on coffee. (Over the past ten years I’m sure my average time for finishing a blog post well exceeds 62 days, so I’m quite chuffed).
The coffee Jordanians drink on a daily basis is similar to Turkish coffee, although I find it exceedingly more volatile to make, and outstandingly better to drink.
Arabic coffee is the most autonomously turbulent creature imaginable. You must harness its rolling waves of rage – like some kind of mythical black sea located near the centre of the earth – and bring them into your control with a skilful deployment of heat.
The Caffpian Sea? I recently quit a copywriting job. Maybe this is why.
If you happen to stir your boiling coffee too vigorously, or at the wrong time, it will mysteriously boil up, just as suddenly and silently as its antonymous milk, and froth over the sides. Similarly, you cannot leave it to sit unattended over the flame. You must control its boil by lifting and lowering the coffee pot, stirring at the same time, always cautious of its disposition to spit and slide over the edges without warning.
Once you’ve harnessed its majestic waves and its boil has become steady with reassuring and familiar bubbles, it sits sweetly on your tongue, rich, thick, and with only a hint of its previous bitterness.