It all started
In 2004 I opened my own coffee house, Big Mt. Coffee Co., in Old Towne Helena just south of Birmingham. My partners and my supplier of choice was OHenry’s Coffee Roasting Co. in Homewood, AL. We just couldn’t find better coffee anywhere.
I became good friends with OHenry’s owners, Randy and Mary Adamy and the Director of Production (roasting) Mike McElwain. Over time they agreed to let me assist in the roasting process several days a week so I could increase my coffee knowledge/addiction. I just love coffee.
After becoming proficient in the roasting process, they asked me to take over for a few days while they all attended the SCAA coffee convention in Atlanta. I was nervous but they believed in me. They would soon regret that decision.
How it all went wrong
Everything went well until the day they came back. While I was in the middle of roasting a batch of espresso they returned and began to share their stories from the conference. In the excitement the roasting coffee fell off my mental radar. In under a minute loud safety alarms were sounding as it began to burn. I had committed fifty-five pounds of espresso larceny. Gratefully everyone decided to see the humor in this incident.
Homewood’s finest arrive
Just as we finished cleaning up in walks the Homewood Fire Department in full regalia. They also found the situation humorous and I had to sit through another round of good natured harassment. Unfortunately I agreed to take a picture with the firemen to document the occasion.
Therapy hasn’t been able to stop those moments right before I fall sleep where memories of this experience rock me back to reality. Perhaps the coffee gods have forgiven me but I’m still working on forgiving myself… just kidding. Every cup of OHenry’s Coffee just makes me feel whole again.