From an idea by Jerry Collins
The safety and security of the world, more often than not, relies upon an innocuous little bean we all know and love. Well, we call it a bean. It is actually the seed from the fruit of the flowering plants Coffea Arabica or Coffea Canephora.
An American Airman on his 89th day of duty in a missile silo located somewhere in North Dakota found a 20lb tin of coffee dated 1952 after they all thought they had run out.
A Submarine cook in a diesel boat moving in for one last attack on transports bound for Tokyo before returning to Pearl Harbor, opening the last tin of the stuff dated 1945.
An engineer Hole Snipe stole a tin dated 1960 and cut the impossible to remove top off with a grinder to make a fresh pot of ‘Black Gang’ coffee to keep the watch alert and the steam plant running like a well-oiled machine disguised as a hellish nightmare.
And do not forget the Marine Devil Dogs who carted the same tins ashore at Guadalcanal, Tarawa, and Inchon and across other battlefields, wiped the blood and mud off their John Wayne’s to free the fresh grounds and boil them in water strained through a mostly clean sock.
And remember the soldiers who spent hours, days, and weeks in the same sandy pits or mudholes, in Godforsaken shitholes around the world, pouring grounds or instant powder into their mouths and trying to work up enough saliva to swallow.
The sky is protected, the sea lanes are open, our freedoms are preserved, and our enemies defeated, all aided and abetted by a little, bitter, often burned, tiny seed.
Nine Count Hand Salute to the Coffee Bean.
4 thoughts on “Coffea Arabica”
Phenomenal piece. Excellent.
Yes! Taking a break from researching Adm. Halsey comm messages during the Battle of Leyte Gulf, a fresh cup of jamoke at my desk, your piece resonated like 16″ thunder.
It would be wrong of me not to remember MSCS Gary DeWitt providing us Cochrane snipes with big green tins of coffee for cumshaw with SRF Yoko during an availability. A GREAT shipmate.
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Enjoying my mug o’ Joe as I read this. No cream or sugar for this old sailor….steaming hot and black. I now indulge myself with the Keurig brewer that makes me suffer for the longest 60 Sec in history!