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Moka Pot

Familiar things comfort. The moka pot’s traveled with me ever since I picked it up from a little shop on a tiny, uncanalled Venice backstreet. It felt appropriate, some little Italian machine to match a pocketknife I picked up in Lisbon. Chosen as talismans or aide-mémoires. I seem to remember the two women who sold it to me found my efforts at speaking amusing. Six years. It’s crossed the Atlantic just one less time than I have, which is to say three, from there, then there and back again. At first I didn’t know how to use it: didn’t twist it tight enough to close the seal so it’d mostly hiss steam and dribble out only a few drops of espresso, and that stale. But I learnt, and I shared. It became a sort of staple of certain routines: reading and writing through lazy afternoons; weekend mornings, when I’d do two rounds back-to-back, one for me and one for her. (Weekdays, usually harried, I picked up drip.) It’s been knocked around as I’ve kicked around. The rounded, stainless base’s scorched brown, but I like the marks of use. The brass handle’s tarnished with a patina of my handy oils, but I like that too. A dent here and there where I’ve dropped it, klutzlike. The seal probably needs replacing as well, but I don’t think the model was sold in the states. When the time comes I’ll jury-rig something.

Categories: Anecdotes.

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