I often get next level (crazy) ideas that journey through my mind at the weirdest times; one moment I’ll be working, focusing on one thing, next second, SNAP, CRACKLE, POP… idea.
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Some ideas see the light of execution, other ideas disappear into a bubble of possible impossibility and then there are a few ideas that will come around again if I don’t pay any immediate attention to it.
That’s kind of how I ended up with hundreds of empty cups ready to be filled to the brim with Mastertons Coffee in Knysna. The idea came, the idea made a pit stop at the path resembling a hint of impossible possibility and then it came around again.
For me, coffee is one of those small yet big things that brings joy; there’s something about the act of folding your hands around a warm mug, sharing the dark aroma with a friend, finding a few minutes to switch off in the day and having a chat over freshly brewed liquid happiness. And after the unfortunate event of the Knysna fires, I wanted to share the joy in the form of a cup of caffeine during my Garden Route visit in August.
The idea was to hand out a few hundred cups of coffee on the go but the implementation of exactly I would do it was a bit vague at first.
To make coffee I had 4 basics to cover: electricity, water, cups and of course, the biggest necessity of it all, coffee.
Mastertons Coffee and Tea Specialists, my go-to roastery in Port Elizabeth and one of the oldest roasteries in South Africa, quickly joined in on the idea and agreed to help out with coffee and cups.
I had the transport thanks to Isuzu, but couldn’t exactly set up shop, find electricity somewhere, make coffee and drive at the same time…
In the end it all boiled down to the basics: coffee plungers, flasks and a gas can with a kettle for when I run out of Mastertons Coffee while being on the go.
I gathered multiple coffee plungers and flasks from friends and family and even found a pump action flask – an oldie but a goodie – on Gumtree, right here in Port Elizabeth, and off I went to the Garden Route, geared with bottles of water, to wake up long before the crack of dawn to boil kettles, fill plungers and fill flasks to hand out coffee to those on their way to work, to those waiting for a ride, to those who stood in a spot where I could park.
Kettle, plunger, flask.
Kettle, plunger, flask.
Numerous times, numerous days.
The passenger seat of the KB300 quickly became a coffee station; on the seat there were sugar, milk and spoons in the crate’s lid and on the floor, inside the crate, flasks in all shapes and sizes stood like soldiers, ready to serve.
Hopped up on the smell of caffeine I would pull up next to a stranger, roll the passenger window down and ask, “Do you want some coffee?”
(I do realise that this behaviour of pulling up next to someone is probably the adult version of: Don’t take sweets from strangers.)
Needless to say, this question led to some very confused faces; I explained that thanks to my hometown roasting heroes, Mastertons Coffee and Tea Specialists, it’s FREE coffee. The faces immediately lit up and when that explanation was still met with a “But why?”, the only answer I could give was, “But why not?” with a big smile.
I left Knysna after a few days and about 300 cups of coffee. In the end this small random act of caffeinated kindness led to more than just confusion; it led to conversations with strangers and moments filled with hugs, smiles, gratitude and the spirit of Ubuntu.
And all it took was one cup of coffee.
I’ve witnessed how one unexpected cup of coffee can make someone’s day and I’ve made a promise to myself to do this more often – whether I’m on the road travelling or at home in Port Elizabeth – and have a flask with me every now and then to sprinkle a bit of caffeinated joy.
Well why not!
In the spirit of International Coffee Day that’s on the 1st of October I’m giving away one pack of coffee (250g) from Mastertons Coffee and Tea Specialists. Why? Well why not?
All you have to do is visit the Mastertons Coffee and Tea Specialists website, have a look at their different coffees and tell me which one you would like to taste. You can comment below, tweet me at @AnjeRautenbach or comment on this link on Facebook.
Only one winner will be selected (you have to be based in South Africa) and it will be announced on the 9th of October.
Please take note that Mastertons Coffee and Tea Specialists do deliver nationwide, and besides coffee you can also order equipment, chocolate and teas.
Special thanks to Mastertons for providing the coffee and cups, thanks to Isuzu for providing the transport and thank you Iga, from Eager Journeys, for getting up early with me one morning to do the kettle, plunger, flask ritual and Rose, from Go Travel Bug, for helping that same morning to distribute coffee by flagging people down next the road in Buffalo Bay
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