I’m currently working in Northampton – a suitably short enough distance that I can travel each day, rather than stay over.
So, each morning, on my way to work, I call into our local supermarket to get my lunch and then I nip up to the cafeteria to get a take-away tea to drink on my journey.
I’m always in a hurry though and I hate having to wait, so my heart drops if, when I get to the top of the stairs, I see a queue at the counter. It’s rare though, at that time of the morning.
But the most annoying thing is that, if there is a queue there – even just one person – they won’t be ordering tea.
No, they will order coffee. Every bloody time.
Now, I have nothing against coffee drinkers per-se – I’m prone to the occasional cup myself, sometimes – but nowadays, nobody orders just a straight coffee, because we’re all bloody continental and Starbucks savvy now, so it’s all flippin’ cappucinos, americanos and skinny lattes.
And they take sodding ages to make!
I’ve timed it: from taking the order to producing the beverage is an average of 90 secs. All that poncing about with putting the coffee in that tea-strainer shaped device, tamping it down, forcing the hot water through it, heating the milk on the machine that sounds like it’s about to cough up a huge wad of phlegm, pouring it in the cup and then sprinkling cocoa powder or chocolate or whatever it is over the finished product.
A minute and a half!
And today, I stood in the queue behind five women who ALL wanted skinny lattes. Nearly eight minutes I waited whilst the girl behind the counter went through all the shenanigans involved in producing – what in essence was – five milky coffees.
Finally I reached the till. “Tea please, to take away.”
Bag in cup, add hot water, splash of milk, here’s my money: 30 seconds. Max.
And that got me thinking: How many man-hours per day are lost whilst people queue up for their coffee?
I reckon, if we are going to get this country back on it’s feet, we need, once more, to become a nation of tea-drinkers.
It’s the right thing to do.