I am a bit of a coffee addict. Not just for the caffeine, but for the rich, bitter, nuanced flavor. I love coffee. Recently I decided to branch out and try some local shops that I hadn't visited previously and soon became acquainted with 21st Street Coffee in the strip. It was love at first sip. I had never been enticed into the shop previously, with it's relatively nondescript awning, I usually stopped by La Prima for my coffee fix while on Penn Ave. I decided to visit because I learned they are the only shop in the area with a Clover machine, which equates to a freshly brewed cup of drip coffee from a tasty little menu. Not only is their coffee stellar, the shop has a quaint appeal -- done up in dark brown and aqua with a 2nd floor loft. It has quickly become one of my regular Saturday haunts.
Yesterday afternoon I decided to visit 21st streets other 'store' (more like a kiosk) in downtown Pgh, a five minute walk from my office. I ordered a cortado, my new favorite espresso drink, which is a shot or two of espresso topped with a small amount of steamed milk. The milk cuts the bitterness of the espresso but does not overwhelm it like a full size latte. Perfect. I ordered mine to go, went to stir in a sugar in the raw and saw the cutest little heart on top of the foam. It made me smile, my first genuinely felt smile in the past few weeks. It was so simple yet unexpected. And even though I stirred the heart right out of that foam, it managed to buoy my spirits. Little things matter, in and of themselves, and as markers for a greater sense of well being, a more optimistic view of the universe.
Running wise, I took my friend Barbara out for her first real 'run' of two miles with another veteran runner. She did awesomely and I enjoyed imparting my knowledge and reconnecting with the thrill of beginning something new. She promises to school me in the ways of the bike in return. Soon I will be on my way to a triathalon, perhaps sooner than I think!