Bienvenue et Marhaba!
I think in Arabic or French most of the time, and depending on the circumstances, I translate my thoughts to English when I speak or write. Although the message usually comes through intact, it’s sometimes lost or half transmitted, which I don’t mind. The rest is open for interpretation, and there lies the beauty of language. What frustrates me the most, though, is when I’m excited to think I’m saying something funny or clever, and all I get is a puzzled look. So I count on you, dear reader, to let me know if my blog ever puts you in a quizzical state of mind and makes you wonder what the heck I’m trying to say.
Here is my friend, Annette’s, reaction when she heard the news: “Nisrine is blogging?!” she was quite surprised that someone too busy to do anything or go anywhere had made time for blogging. Little did she know that I make time for things I’m passionate about—once I finally wrap my mind around them.
When I first considered starting this blog, I had my share of fears and self-created obstacles. What if I ran out of ideas after a few entries? What if I became too busy to write on a regular basis? What if I made mistakes? What if the sky fell on my computer? What if I had a bad hair day? I tied all these worries and perfectionist demons together in an old dress, which ended up in the ocean instead of at the Goodwill. I had to drive all the way from Orlando to Cape Canaveral to toss it into the deep blue, but my fears have lessened, and I’m ready to begin.
I have read of people who met their spouses and got married through blogging—even couples who have gone on to have children and grandchildren. Have blogs been around long enough for that?! Although I don’t anticipate going that route—I recently said “yes” to a brave and smashing man—I certainly want to connect with a large audience of readers from all four corners of the world.
I hope you think of this blog as your café du coin, where a comforting 500-calorie muffin and a caffeine-loaded (or decaf) cup of Arabica coffee or a relaxing glass of wine are always à l’ordre du jour. Not knowing my audience yet, I will keep it simple tonight—and alcohol-free—and serve everybody a welcoming cup of spiced coffee.
Please feel at home.
This coffee has a sweet aroma and is reminiscent of the holidays. Enjoy it on its own, with milk, or top it with a blob of whip cream.
1 cup freshly brewed coffee
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 small gum mastic grains, crushed
1 teaspoon sugar
In a small saucepan, heat the coffee, cinnamon, and gum mastic over low heat, stirring occasionally, until almost boiling, 6 to 8 minutes.
Strain the coffee through a fine sieve over a serving cup. Stir in the sugar and serve immediately.