I need coffee, but all I have is trail mix.


As we flew down I-10 heading West toward California from Arizona, I was munching on my trail mix and wondering why it is called trail mix to begin with. What is funny is that whether I am hiking on a trail or driving across country, trail mix always tastes good. Something about the crunch of the nuts and the occasional sweetness of M&Ms that permeates my tongue. Or is it that you get so hungry that any food tastes good?

Today I find myself eating trail mix for lack of other suitable nourishment to fill my palate’s desire. We just stopped at McDonald’s for lunch for “Happy Meals” in an effort to keep the kids from killing each other in the back seat as the hunger gets the best of them and takes over their personality. At the McDonald’s counter I approached confidently knowing what I wanted to order – 2 chicken nugget happy meals and a couple of milk shakes. I couldn’t bring myself to eat beef today and the fish fillet will probably make me feel worse than not eat at all.I am not sure I want to order anything for myself.

My eye catches a new item on the menu – a McCafe coffee drink. Considering we ran out of the house this morning (leaving the french press looking lonely and sad on the counter), I got the bright idea to order a coffee drink. My need for coffee was greater than my desire to avoid drinking coffee from McDonald’s. Although I had “heard” that the coffee at McDonald’s wasn’t that bad. I ordered a “Cafe Moca Hot”. My mouth was already salivating at the idea of getting some caffeine. (Strange how I suddenly found myself addicted to the stuff to begin with.)

Chris picked up the order and brought it over. Now the hot drink isn’t looking quite as appealing as the kid’s milk shakes, but hey, I will definitely feel better after the caffeine injection. I take a sip and this is the sweetest mocha I have ever tasted. And when I say “sweet”, I don’t mean that in a positive way. I begin wondering how much coffee was actually put in the drink, because it doesn’t taste like there could be more than a few drops of coffee…if any? I keep sipping it thinking the taste will get better, but it just doesn’t. My only salvation was the large order of french fries now my ‘lunch’ since I couldn’t bear to order anything else. I notice on the side of my cup there are letters “NF” and “HC: Hmmm..they must have given me non-fat instead of regular? Could that be why this drink tastes so bad? Just at the moment I am wondering what the “HC” stands for and Chris says “The receipt says hot chocolate, you know”. Apparently my order of Coffee Mocha – Hot was translated into “Hot Chocolate”.

I am not really surprised that there was confusion in my order, I mean we were in California, so I guess I was happy I got a “Hot Drink” and not “Hot Salsa”. I was really disappointed that I didn’t get the drink I wanted, but what could I do? I have to say, that it would not have been quite as disappointing if a 1/2 mile further down the road I hadn’t seen a Starbuck’s. So I didn’t get my beloved coffee, but at least I have this yummy trail mix.

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