Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Caffeine -- jumping off the wagon?

I gave up caffeinated coffee about 13 years ago. Back then, I worked in a coffee shop and loved to drink it at night. So I gradually switched to decaf for obvious reasons. Now, if I have a cup of the real thing, you have to peel me off the ceiling.

But lately I've been wondering if I shouldn't ease back into caffeine in preparation for our trip to Ethiopia. Thanks to some research by my blogging buddy, Holly, as well as some of my own, I've learned that coffee is an integral part of the social scene in Ethiopia. It's very common for visitors to be invited to take part in a coffee ceremony. During the ceremony, which can last a couple of hours, the beans are roasted, ground and served in a formal style. But here's the kicker, it's considered impolite to retire before you've had 3 cups as the third cup is considered to bestow a blessing.

If I did that without a little caffeine desensitization training, I would set a Guiness record for insomnia!

I'm not sure how long it will take to crank up my tolerance, but I figure since I've gone 13 years without, I better start now. Of course, I'm open to other ideas and suggestions that anyone might have. If you want to read more about Ethiopian coffee ceremony, check out this link. Did you know two-thirds of Ethiopia's earnings come from coffee growing and picking?


Holly said...

I've heard that the cups are really small and handle-less, so maybe three of them would equal one big mug here? Won't it be fun if a few of us end up in ET at the same time? Oh I really hope it works out that way! :D

aunt al said...

Also check out the documentary "Black Gold" for information about how Ethiopian coffee growers get the shaft by big coffee companies. Buying fair trade certified helps them get a fair wage.

Lori said...

Jump, jump, jump! I hear that the coffee there is absolutley amazing and I would hate for you to miss out on that experience:) I am of course kidding, I shouldn't pass my addiction on to you!

Spence & Lori said...

You're right. Despite my decaffeinism, I LOVE good coffee, and I wouldn't want to miss out on a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Craig & Cindy said...

That is TOO cool. I did not know that about the Ethiopian coffee ceremony. Lucky for me, I have a great relationship with coffee. Thanks for posting the link!


Craig & Cindy said...

You ain't just whistlin' dixie, raspberries are expensivo...!

I was thinking about your MO on drinking coffe anew. At work, when I don't want caffeine, but I do want coffee...I usually pour half a cup of decaf and then fill the rest of the mug with hot water. Maybe you could start this way and work yourself up...?