Sunday, August 28, 2011

The Best Coffee

Everybody has a favourite coffee shop. That place where you can get the perfect cup of coffee and really launch your day in the right direction. The best part of your morning, that first cup of coffee. Be they big or small, old or new, busy or not busy, we love our cafes. With this post I would like to talk a bit about my favourite coffee house.
The Up Tempo Cafe
The Up Tempo Cafe is located in a hitherto unknown and neglected little neighbourhood on the outskirts of Gwelf where the old city runs creatively alongside the river. This trendy establishment is owned and operated with humour and style by the now regionally famous five Tempo sisters. These five industrious girls have, in less than a year, taken their small, off the map neighbourhood and tuned it into a cultural hub and buzzing hive of activity simply by selling good coffee. Well, very, very good coffee. The best coffee.

Tempo One
Tempo Two
Tempo Three
Tempo Four and Five
What makes their coffee so special and different ? Let's put it this way - the java we all know and love gives you a sudden blast of energy and zings you awake in the morning, which is exactly what we want it to do. But, it can also make you nervous, jittery and jumpy if you drink too much and this is precisely what we don't want it to do. On the other hand, Tempo coffee brings on an enormous feeling of gratitude and well being, which is a completely different kind of rejuvenating energy, and of course, being grateful will keep you from over indulging. So don't worry, you won't go off the deep end. Instead you will find yourself truly appreciating your surroundings and a strong desire to cherish and protect them will grow in you. You will start paying attention to the details and aesthetics will begin to matter. Who can say what kind of primeval faerie glamour the Tempo sister are weaving into these exotic blends but whatever it is sure seems to be working.
The neighbourhood has been completely transformed. Artists, poets and creative spirits of every stripe are migrating to the area. Improvements and restorations are happening all over the place. Fences are being repaired and gardens tended to. Window boxes filled and litter picked up. There is colour everywhere now - murals, flowers, decoration and Topiary enliven the streets. Even the Luthiers have come back !

And yet, somehow, surprisingly, magically, the people who oppose this point of view are unable to find the cafe - more of that faerie glamour I shouldn't wonder. They just never quite seem to make it. They get lost or forget what they're doing and go home, their dirty towels and unwashed dishes a more appealing option than some vague notion of a coffee shop they've heard about somewhere. There seems to be an obvious shortage of vandals, negatorians and nay-sayers in the Tempo neighbourhood.  Oh well, we'll just have to make do without them.
So if you manage to make it over to the Up Tempo Cafe be sure to bring your journal, or your sketchbook, or your tin whistle or whatever it is that you do because chances are very good that you will be inspired. At the very least you will have a terrific cup of coffee.

Peace be with you and happy travels.


Monday, August 22, 2011

The Fortune Teller's House

With this post I thought I might bring your attention to a small, rustic tree house just east of Gwelf on the Old North Road. The Fortune Teller lives here with her two sisters and it is their business to tell you the truth. If you are not interested in the truth you will pass this house and continue happily on your way in comfortable and ignorant bliss. If however you are interested in the truth you will proceed with caution to the front door. By the time they get you to the back porch it will be too late. You are going to hear all the truth you could ever hope for whether you like it or not.
Shevka is the middle sister. She reads the cards and tells the fortunes. Shevka is the one most people remember. She does not speak directly to you but to herself. Grenka is the youngest. She makes the wine and serves the wine. She asks the questions and does most of the talking.  People like talking to Grenka. Penyoval is the oldest sister and the one no one sees. She is very powerful. She makes and lights the candles. Candles infused with particle magic that play music in your head and unlock the doors in your mind. Candle waxing is the most subtle and difficult of the fortune telling arts. The cards and the wine and the candles will make the truth unavoidable. You will speak it and you will hear it. There will be no stopping it.


Some people are okay with that much truth but not everyone is. The truths are told and then written on paper and placed in small clay pots. The pots are taken down to the bridge spanning the ravine and dropped over the side. This completes the process.  For some, the fortunes are too much to bear and they throw themselves over the side instead and plunge into the gorge below. The sisters cannot help this or stop it. It is not their business what you do with the your fortune but only that you hear it once you cross the threshold. The bones and broken pots are piling up down there. It's a very lonely place.

Please proceed with caution. Be well and go in peace. The sisters are waiting.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Getting Sorted

Big apologies for the uneven posts lately. Just working some kinks out of the system. In the meantime, some recent sketchbook work.. More arthritic vagrants with beards.