Well. I tried, anyway.
I make a full pot of coffee in the morning - about 8 cups. We have (well, we have borrowed from my Mom) a coffeemaker with a thermos pot which is nice because I get up at 6 am and need a cup right away. But it's not before 9 am, though, that I actually have time to sit down and drink a cup in peace and quiet, when all the kids are gone to school and preschool.
So what I usually do is that I heat my milk in the microwave and add the still-warm-but-not-hot coffee to it. Works well enough.
When Doug is not here, I do the same in the afternoon, as there is usually still about a cup of coffee left from the morning. It's not the best coffee anymore by a long shot but you know, I get some caffeine and don't have to make a single cup in a big coffee machine. I do wish I had a single serve machine but that's been on our wishlist for a long time and will likely remain there for a while, as other things are more important. Like, health insurance. Or, food. When I feel like I really need a good cup of coffee I go visit my Mom who has the best coffee machine in the world. It's a Saeco. 'nuff said.
Yesterday late afternoon, I wanted my cup of coffee. No, actually I needed my cup of coffee. Leah had been whiny and David is writing an essay and he is... not an essay writer.
So I put milk into my favorite NY Met cup and placeed it in the microwave. Now, our microwave, as so many of our possessions, is idiosyncratic. I bought it when we moved here and still had kids who needed bottled milk. I liked to warm the bottles in the microwave and needed one that was tall enough to accommodate a bottle. Which, you know, was kind of hard to find! German microwaves, or microwaves sold in Germany, tend to come in two sizes: small, and tiny. The only microwave that was tall enough didn't have digital displays - only turn knobs. That's not precise, and a bit unwieldy, but I needed the size more than the comfort, so I bought it. About two years later, the timer knob broke off. I'm sure you can get that replaced or repaired. But it's at the bottom of the list of things that need to be replaced and repaired. Just like the coffee machine, we use it and make do.
That means that we turn the timer stub to 60 minutes and turn the microwaving process off by leaving the door open. Whenever the time runs down, we rewind it (with the broken-off knob). That's okay as long as you don't forget you have something cooking in the microwave.
That milk. You know, it stinks a lot when milk burns. It stinks even more when it goes up in smoke. When I smelled something, I first checked the stove. Nothing on the stove. I nearly left the kitchen again (it was loud, kids were yelling, it was almost dinner time - the famous witching hour). I saw the microwave (which sits on top of the fridge) and the smoke billowing out. I opened it - and nearly closed it again. There was this... crackling sound. That was not a good sound. It was the sound of ceramic stress. I leaned the door to (because otherwise it would have run again, right?), half expecting the cup to explode under the cooling air. It didn't. But it crackled for maybe another hour which was a bit spooky.
I got the microwave mostly clean. It was very black. Soot is really nasty stuff to clean. The turntable is made of glass and I got most of the soot off. There are a few spots where what-was-the-milk is so baked into the glass, it won't come off. Imagine the temperatures necessary to achieve that. The cup... it was my very favorite cup. I bought this cup back in the last century, on the day I met Carlos for the first time, actually. The Met, cherry beer from Wisconsin, and this mug, is what I remember mostly from this day. It's red and has the Met icon on it. Doug has a matching blue one. I don't think it's salvageable. The milk is burned into the ceramics, not just coating it. They don't sell them anymore. I checked.
I am grateful I didn't burn down the house. I'm not sure whether the microwave still works. Can you believe that I don't remember whether it was still running when I saw the smoke wafting out of it? I will try that later today, I think. But I will really, really miss that cup.