What Montenegro's coffee culture has taught me

We moved to Montenegro from Cape Town in May this year. There are a lot of differences, not least of which is the language! (Montenegrin is very close to Serbian)

Right from the start, we struggled to get take-away coffee. My hubby and I love walking, and we love getting a coffee to accompany us. This was quite challenging for us. There are dozens of places that serve coffee, but VERY few take-aways. Is there any point to walking, if coffee doesn't come with?! In Cape Town, as in the UK (We visit there quite a bit!), every cafe / restaurant has the option for take-away coffee. You can get your caffeine kick on-the-go.

(I'd like to confirm that I have a reusable take-away coffee mug for this purpose!)
Coffee to go

Why is Montenegro different?

Do they not like coffee? Or walking?

We work from home, coffee shops and co-working spaces a lot, so we're all over the show. At all times of the day, all times of the year. Week days, and weekends. What I noticed is that the coffee consumption is just as high as anywhere else we've been. The difference? When someone wants coffee, they sit down, order it, enjoy it, and then move on. This is generally done with someone else, so the coffee is accompanied by a gossip session / chat / meeting.

My point is that it's an experience. It's a bit of time that you take out of the day to slow down, socialise perhaps, and take the time to be a human. 

We're so used to having everything on-the-go, that we've forgotten that the only reason we need it, is because we're always on the way somewhere else. We never stop, so we never have the time to sit and enjoy the experience.

We're always in a rush

We got into trouble in Prague when we walked into a coffee shop and asked for a take-away coffee. The owner was pretty adamant that coffee must be enjoyed without the rush, and he wouldn't serve us until we sat down and stayed there for the duration of our caffeine kick. It was pretty funny, but also pretty telling!

If we can't scratch out 15 minutes to sit somewhere and enjoy a coffee, alone or with someone else, surely this is an indication that our priorities are a little skew? That we're living for the 'rush'?

We may need to force it, trust me, I know that. I've been there for most of my life. I'm always on the way 'somewhere else', to get something done, so I can rush off somewhere else again. It's not easy to change that, especially if everyone else around you does the same.

Carve out a little 'enjoy coffee' time!

Life is a collection of moments, experiences and it goes really quickly. It's up to us to slow down, and enjoy our coffee (or tea!) with a little breathing room. Of course, I have a lovely little collection of coffee mugs to help you enjoy your moments!

For us? We're taking it slower, and have stopped looking for take-aways! 

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