Sometimes taking care of myself involves doing something big and time-consuming, such as going out for a 10-mile jog.
Sometimes it’s much simpler.
For the past six months or so, I’ve made a point of enjoying one simple pleasure every day, without fail: my morning coffee.
I don’t drink as much coffee as I used to. Sleep is too precious and too fragile these days to jeopardize it with two or three shots of espresso or several cups of coffee. Instead, I concentrate on quality over quantity, and I start my mornings with a pourover made from the best quality coffee I can find (usually Sumatran, and preferably from a local roaster), ground on the spot and prepared using the pourover method, which is a little time-consuming but yields a better cup of coffee than anything an automatic drip machine is likely to produce.
The whole process, from heating the water to tossing the spent grounds in the compost bucket, takes about five minutes. I spend another five to 10 sipping the finished product and enjoying a few minutes to myself before the house wakes up.
On a cool morning, I’ll let all the dogs out and take my coffee out to the garden to sip while they play; when it’s hot, I stay inside, where Walter might decide to curl up on my lap or Lillian might toddle into the dining room to sit on the floor beside my chair in companionable silence. The simple ritual of heating the water, grinding the beans, and slowly pouring the water over them makes for a nice transition from rest to running around, and one I’ve come to cherish.