On a trip to New Mexico last summer, I found myself drinking coffee out of Styrofoam cups. That doesn’t taste good to me, and it grates on my environmental sensibilities to use things once and throw them away.
So, en route to Santa Fe, I pulled in at a Love’s truck stop just over the Texas state line. I bought the only ceramic mug with a design I could relate to, one with an upbeat musical theme: piano keyboards, saxophones, guitars and treble-clef signs, in orange, aqua, black and chartreuse.
The barista back home asked where I had bought it.
“Sounds like it might be in Ireland.”
What does she know? I thought. She’s probably never been to Ireland.
I puzzled over the remark for hours, pondering the names of places I’ve traveled in the Emerald Isle: Ballinasloe, Connemara, the Burren, Galway. Those names don’t sound anything like “Tucumcari.”
Sometimes I think I’m so smart. What took me so long to figure it out?
Maybe I needed another jolt of java.