Tuesday, July 13, 2021


This morning for the first time in a long while, I wanted to brew a cup of espresso. For some reason I haven't brewed a cup in several months. I moved my espresso machine from the counter over my wine cooler to the kitchen counter. After using it for the last time, it was clean and ready to go. 

I rinsed the water reservoir out and filled it with fresh cool water. Deciding not to grind fresh beans, I reached for a sealed jar with some finally ground Starbucks coffee in it, scooped the appropriate amount of coffee, and filled the sump (the steal filter.) I tamped it down, enough to fit tightly when I secured the sump to the machine. 

I pressed (or mashed) the brew button on the front of the machine but noting happened. I tried it several more times. By now, I was not a happy camper. I unplugged the cord and plugged it into a different socket, but it still would not turn on. I removed the reservoir and turned the machine upside down thinking maybe the cord was cramped - or something. A girl can hope. But alas, nothing. My beloved machine was dead.

Not only was I not going to get the fresh brewed cup of espresso, I had a machine that did not work. A replacement was not in my budget.

A little history here. 7 or 8 years ago, I requested an espresso machine for Christmas.   As usual, my most benevolent Santa did his research and what I found on Christmas morning was a bright shiny new espresso/cappuccino machine. It was a bit more intimidating and serious than what I had in mind. But after reading the directions and watching a video on You Tube - I was able to set it up and make a fabulous cup of espresso.

Over the years, through several moves, I have always had my espresso maker. And it never let me down until this morning. Knowing it was an older model, I hoped to find one exactly like my deceased one, perhaps at a lower price, maybe on clearance.

Finding one online, I saw that the exact model I had was still highly rated and no less expensive than it had been many years ago. This being way out of my price range, I did some research and reading and found a machine that was highly rated and reasonably priced, albeit in a different class from my beloved machine. I went ahead and ordered it. 

Later, I found some reviews of my new machine. I also went to You Tube to find a video. It was a bit overwhelming to find one entitled, "How to Setup and use you New Espresso Maker."  How difficult could it be? Then I remembered the learning curve I had with my initial machine.

The video started with an orientation of the machine - the reservoir, the sump and filter, the steam wand, etc. Three minutes into the video, the narrator noted it was time to switch the machine on. He reached to bottom left side and hit a switch. My eyes got wide.

Damn, I thought, there was hope after all. I put my laptop down and went to the kitchen. Sitting on the counter was my blessed machine, I had not had the heart to throw it away. I reached down to the bottom left base of the machine and pressed the Off/On switch.(In my defense the switch was a flat button hidden on the base at the back, the same color of the base of the machine.) Voila - the 3 lights on the front turned on and started blinking as the machine heated up.

I felt like an idiot. It had not been that long and yet, I had forgotten how to turn on the machine. But, I recovered quickly, knowing that I could now return the second rate machine I had ordered earlier that morning. Once again, life was good. I could look forward to a fresh cup of Joe whenever I wanted one. That is, if I don't forget how to turn the machine on by tomorrow morning.

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