The coffee cup that reminded me I was human

So, there I am. It’s a little after 9am and I’m on an aeroplane.

I’ve been up since 4am and my brain has become a bubbling hybrid of two extremes. Sleepiness and pre-holiday excitement.

When it comes to travel I’m a reader. I love to read when I’m on a flight or a long drive. It’s guilt-free reading time when you have nothing else to do but lose yourself in words that inspire and interest you.

So, to keep myself sharp, I order a coffee. This turns up:

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I assumed that the bit on the top was to allow the coffee to cool down. I left it for a while and came back to it…only to find out that it was too hot.

So I pull the lid off, let it cool down, and then take a sip. Damned if I don’t get a mouthful of coffee suds.

Instantly my stunned mind went to blame the airline. Why on earth would they serve coffee with such sediment?

The flight attendant walks past, smiles at me, notices that I put my lid on the floor and asks me if I want another one.

Why? Why would I? I just took the lid off…


And then it hits me. The ‘cooling off bit on the top’ (great phrasing) is actually a filter…to stop idiots like me getting a mouthful of coffee suds.

And so I gratefully accepted the new lid and enjoyed my coffee through the filter.

For a moment or two I felt the thing that we all fear most…idiocy.

It was so obvious…how did I not realise?

Hindsight has a way of making you feel ridiculous, doesn’t it?

But that feeling didn’t last long. Pretty soon it disappeared into the clouds around me and slipped away from everyone else’s memory.

I mean, after all, in a world where we try our hardest to know everything and to uncover every secret…it’s nice to sometimes realise just how stupid you are.

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