Soy Milk

When my grandmother Nettie was in her 80’s she came to visit us here on the Island for the first time. We had a grand old time, and helped her accomplish many “firsts” for her life: first time she ever went through a drive-thru (the source of my favorite story: I’m in the drive-thru line, placing my order, and Nettie, from the back seat, says “who the hell are you talkin’ to?”); the first time she ever went to a brash rock and roll-drenched movie; the first time she ever ate lobster.

It was a fun visit.

About the second or third day, I came down for breakfast and noticed that she was putting cream and sugar in her coffee. This was unusual, as I’d always remembered her taking her coffee black. When I asked her why she’d changed she told me that she’d been drinking coffee black for 60 years and had never tried it with cream and sugar. Earlier that year she had and, much to her surprise, she said, “it just tastes a lot better.”

In this same vein, Brian Cudmore announced to me the other day that he had started drinking soy milk. And he likes it. A fact confirmed to me by the feisty woman at the Uncommon Grocer who sells it to him (and who went to school with Brian’s daughter [PDF file]).

It goes without saying that it has not been an easy couple of weeks for the Cudmore family and their employees, but it’s heartening to know that, in the midst of all the hullabaloo, soy milk can sneak up and seize the day. Not because it tastes better (does it?), but simply as proof that no matter who you are and what’s going on, if go off the beaten track once in a while, you might just find you’ve been missing something all along.

And that’s a lesson we can all take something from.