Wednesday. I go to Fred’s Yaletown showroom to deliver bulk chocolate that he can put out for clients, and demi-tasse cups and saucers for his newly built espresso and scotch bar. Grateful he no longer has to serve macchiatos in hi-ball glasses, he offers to make me a coffee from a pound of Stumptown beans he got on a recent trip to Seattle.
I watch him fiddle and fuss with an assortment of dials and knobs that have only icons to explain their function. Fred doesn’t read icon. The coffee is poured long and weak. He downs his without hesitation, and looks to me for approval. I shrug.
Twenty minutes and seven cups later, he admits to needing to read the manual. He’s starting to twitch and his eyes have glazed over. He puts his hand on his chest and I can see he’s counting beats per minute.
Resuscitate a guy with dry lips or feign an excuse to pick the fleas of a thousand camels from my armpits, I choose the latter and make a hasty exit.
Friday. The Professor is on his way to the Café, and texts me to ask if our POS system is back up and running. While I was at Fred’s two days before, witnessing coffee shock syndrome, the web-based till at the store suffered a catastrophic hard drive failure, necessitating terminal replacement on Thursday and countless hours on speakerphone with tech support. It also forced us to a hand written post-it note order system and cash only payment.
I reply that too much time spent looking at a tangle of wires in a dimly lit cupboard has given me eye strain, but we’re almost fully operational. He offers to bring his LED headlamp.
“I’m looking forward to the day when the air is so electrified that nothing ever needs a wire or plugging in again,” I text him in response.
“I’d never want to leave ohm,” he replies.
Saturday. My new baby girl is balanced on my chest and shoulder while I attend to a backlog of emails. iTunes is running in the background and it seems she’s keen on the Kings of Leon.
Today was supposed to be the end of the world and I wanted to make sure I answered everybody before humanity experienced catastrophic heart drive failure.
There are a slew of notifications from Twitter that I’m being followed. I instinctively look over my shoulder.
The sudden movement wakes the baby. Her eyes half-open and glazed, and gently twitching, she burps up something that looks like tuna fish, which is odd, because she’s drunk on an exclusive diet of breast milk. I take that as my cue to pass her off to mama Mink, and go upstairs to make a cup of coffee.
Fred calls. He says he’s gone through two pounds of espresso in less than four days, and he’s also finished the 2.2 kg box of dark mini Mink chocolate squares. I remind him the chocolate was earmarked for clients.
“I’m not in season,” he says. “I won’t have anyone in for a few weeks yet, but I find those little squares so easy to eat.”
We make arrangements to meet at the Café Sunday so he can replenish his coffee and chocolate inventory. It means too, that I can regulate his coffee consumption. I can’t afford to be party to another catastrophic failure of any kind.
Mink Chocolates Inc.,
Mink A Chocolate Cafe Ltd.
Call the store: 604.633.2451
Call my mobile: 604.376.3464
Call toll free: 1.866.283.5181
Watch: youtube.com search mink chocolates
In Person: 863 Hastings Street West, Vancouver, BC V6C 3N9
Nine out of every ten persons say they love chocolate. The tenth lies.
– Anthelme Brillat-Savarin