Friday, April 4, 2014

31 March 2014
Monday noon

The perfect cup of disillusionment coffee

The breakfast tray was not cleared away until the lunch tray was brought in. A sure sign that the CENA – resident ratio rule was in force again. If there are not enough residents, there is always one CENA sent home. The remaining CENAs now are expected to do the same chores for the residents minus one other helper. This sets everything back. If you have need of a CENA, just push the call light switch. When the resident ratio rule is in effect, this means that there may be a response in half an hour to forty-five minutes, or maybe not.

The lunch was delivered with a cup of coffee. Normally the coffee is of a disappointing nature. It is a dubious brand, often the cheaper of the selection in the grocery store. It is always decaffeinated (can't have the residents hopped up on caffeine now, can we), and always served at a tepid temperature (the responsibility factor is so big for these people that there is this tremendous fear of burning one's self). So the coffee is brewed in the kitchen, behind locked doors, then not allowed out until until it has cooled down greatly. It Is served with breakfast, in the morning, when most people take on their daily caffeine load. You can have as much as you would like, but why, there is no caffeine to have any effect. The coffee is certainly not drunk for the fine flavor of carefully chosen beans, roasted to perfection, then impeccably brewed. That does not happen. If you were a coffee drinker when you came here, there is nothing here to sustain such a habit – unless you thoroughly enjoy the taste of heavily chlorinated municipal water.

Caffeine has a half life of six hours in the human body. It is easily excreted. The half life of decaffeinated coffee is negligible, except for the taste of poorly made coffee. That can haunt you for days. The lunch tray was delivered with a cup of coffee, no sugar packets and no cream in the little sealed plastic thimbles that cream is delivered. I push the call light button, hoping to request the missing coffee condiments.

Fifty minutes later a CENA responds, asking what I would like. It seems silly now. The cool coffee has gone completely cold. The originally served disappointing coffee has become disillusioning now. It is absolutely amazing to watch the special transformative powers this place has on food stuffs. Not to be confused with the act of cooking, which is debatable. Just simple tardiness and transformation. 

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