Give Me my Latte in a Mug, Dammit!

Leigh wants her coffee in a mug just like this.
Leigh wants her coffee in a mug just like this.

I know that headline is a little harsh, but I’m starting to feel that if I’m going to pay $4.15 for a special latte, and enjoy it in a coffee house with a friend, then I want it in a mug.

The other day I went to a cute coffee shop to catch up with a friend. I got my latte in a paper cup. It irks me.

Paper is fine when you’re on the go, but if you want to soak up the atmosphere, then paper with a lid on my coffee does absolutely nothing for me.  It just irritates me.

I have a blogger friend called Triangle Explorer. His love of coffee is like my love of love of luxury hotels. Truthfully, I think he has a bed in the back of Sola Coffee on Lead Mine Road because he’s there every morning with a gorgeous cup of coffee in a mug, no less.  I know this because we follow each other on Instagram.  He’s always drinking pretty coffee in a mug.

He makes me want to have a great cup of coffee.   And I want my coffee just as he gets his: in a mug, not a paper cup.

So, the other day I met a friend who I had not seen in months at a local coffee shop.  My son was in a church camp, and I dropped my 3-year-old at Camp MiMa (my mom’s house) for two hours.  This coffee shop is adorable.  It has so much atmosphere. It’s a place that makes you just want to be there.  Cute couches.  Artwork on the walls.   Organic, fair-trade coffee.  I was so excited to be able to sit there for a little bit and enjoy the slow pace with a great cup of coffee.

I am a mom. My life is chaotic.  I’m lucky if I remember to put on underwear.

This quiet time with a friend was a treat.

I ordered a special coffee. Some hazelnut Irish thing that sounded good.

My coffee came in the dreaded paper cup with a lid.  I couldn’t even look to see if the latte was even pretty.

I was disappointed.  Having my special coffee in a paper cup makes me feel as if I need to speed things up, and be on the go, as opposed to enjoying and savoring a moment.  As a blogger, I couldn’t even take a pretty picture of it for Instagram.  No one would  even like a paper cup of coffee in your Instagram feed. Not going to happen, and if someone did like it then it is because nothing better was in their photo stream. 

My question to Triangle Explorer this week after this experience was why does he get these beautiful coffees with latte art and I get paper cups every time I go into a coffee shop?  We’ve talked about this numerous times. At first, I thought it was maybe because I had kids with me and they were hoping that I wouldn’t stay long.

But then another friend told me it was because I was going to Starbucks. Well, I’ve seen some mugs in big cities in Starbucks, or at least I thought so. 

Knowing that I was going to get a paper cup in Starbucks, I started going local if I knew I was going to soak up the atmosphere and sit a few minutes, even if I had a child with me.

And I continue to get paper cups on these coffee journeys. I've got to find the places with mugs, but I don't want to drive half an hour to get there either. 

Hey, I was in my 20s in the ’90s during the “Friends” era.   They drank coffee in these big mugs on TV when they went downstairs to the coffee shop below their apartments.  

I want that feeling. I want to enjoy my coffee in a nice mug.  Is that too much to ask?

I’ve asked Triangle Explorer to give me a list of places where I can get a ceramic mug, and he may even do a whole blog post on it because he thinks there could be a “health code” issue, and those with paper don’t meet the facility standards that you must have in order to use glassware. Inquiring minds want to know. 

If that’s the case, I understand and will learn to accept paper cups.

But there’s just something special about coffee in a mug, especially when it hasn't been your day, your week, or even your year. 

Yes, I watched a lot of "Friends." I bet that theme song is in your head now.