Magic Coffee

If you aren’t a Coffee snob, maybe you don’t know that Ethiopia is synonymous with fantastic coffee. Additionally, I have found it to be magic.

The last day in D.C., a some of us took time to wander the monuments. I’ve been there a few times, but who would turn down the chance to see them at sunset?

After the monuments tour, I took a quick nap and got to the airport early for a 13hr flight…which was delayed.

For 3 hours.

After landing in Addis I was at only 6hrs of sleep in 48hrs. I would say I was totally impressed that I didn’t fall asleep during the basic schedule overview session we had, but that would almost be a lie.

After the session I most definitely did not fall asleep in, we were given coffee. Not sure why they waited until after, but it kept me up for an hour so I could eat dinner. (About a minute after I drank a cup, I felt like I was levitating. I think my hands were shaking a bit and my head started buzzing. American coffee has been ruined forever. Come at me Starbucks.) The foam on the top of the coffee (not latte foam – its like the crema at the top of an espresso shot) is beautiful. It’s served in small teacups, and it’s absolutely delicious with or without sugar. The cup that was roasted, ground and brewed in front of me tasted almost like hot chocolate. It was amazing.

The Ethiopian coffee ceremony is about community, family, building relationships, taking time to sit down with people you love, and then about hand roasted beans and a brilliant drink.

And it is magical.




For now.
I’m writing this sitting on the tiny plane taking me from Philly to Norfolk, having just said goodbye to my life, and all the people in it…

For now.

Looking around the plane, I just felt this chapter of my life close – a very visceral feeling of “holy f***”, this is all new, and this is my new normal. I don’t know anyone here. I’m not really sure of any specifics of where I’m going. I’ve never been to Norfolk. (Technically I won’t have been there even after I get to D.C. because airports don’t count as visiting a city. In my opinion, you have to leave the airport and eat at least one meal in a city for it to count. (Italian-American family, so food is the most important thing. Family too…but they really go together. And family isn’t just your blood relatives either. Soooo anyone who walks into our house is offered?/accosted by food.) Btw – Catie, if you’re reading this, mom made coffee cake. I told her you love it and I didn’t get a chance to make it before I left, so she did. And yes. I’m telling you via blog. Of all the ways of telling you this, probably the most inconvient??? And now I’ve made a bunch of other people read it too. 😊 Everyone else: if you know my family and where I live, stop by for coffee cake and give my mother a hug. She could probably use it. Thanks!!)

Well that was one hell of an off topic ramble.


The past week has been a series of good byes and their accompanying emotional rollercoaster moments, interspersed with frantic packing of my life and suitcases. I definitely forgot my toothbrush, but if that’s all I forgot, I’m set.

The non-packing part of my life this week was pretty amazing. I got to hang with a friend who has know me since I was 6years old. There’s something pretty awesome about friends who have known you through several evolutions.

The little boy I’ve been watching for the past 7 years is not so little anymore. I got to hang with him twice, and both times were super bittersweet. (Mario Kart, Harry Potter, Pikmin, Wendy’s and doughnuts for the win!)

I surprised one of my ESL students by taking him to the airport when he didn’t think he was going to see me again, and it was absolutely brilliant. He was so surprised, and it was a great ride.

Rounding it all off I went to see Wonder Woman last night with good friends, my sister and my mom. I loved it. There were tough goodbyes, more packing, a nap, more tears and hugs, then to the airport. It was a whirlwind of tears, laughter, coffee, luggage, hugs and deep breaths.

See you later Philly,

Hello D.C.!
My life in suitcases for two years:

Think I like purple?


What I’ve been listening to lately:

Suit and Jacket – Judah and the Lion (It just feels appropriate.)

Pistols at Dawn – Seinabo Sey (Sense8 RIP ☹️)

For Forever – Dear Evan Hansen

Black Coffee – Ella Fitzgerald

Sober – Blink-182 (I am so happy they still sound the same. 8th grade me is overjoyed.)