I've been wanting to journal lately. There is a lot happening in life, but nothing that fits neatly into a few paragraphs with some narrative structure plus a pun.
The last two times I have ordered a flat white at a café I've received a cappuccino. This kind of made sense on a sunny Sunday after our walk around St Clair and viewing of moorhen ducklings (henlings?) among the mosquitos. I phrased Vanessa's cappuccino order as size, then variety combo, whereas when I ordered the flat white I started with variety and ended with size. This could have caused confusion. Whatever. I'm not afraid of a little chocolate sprinkled on top of my frothed milk.
Today there was no Vanessa or second order. I handed over my keep cup like it was 2019 and I paid $4.50 for a flat white like it was 2019. There was no size specified because they just give you whatever amount of coffee fits in your keep cup. Again I received a cappuccino. Also I'm not sure, but I think they called my order out as "Brett" rather than "Brad". But what are the chances that someone with a similar name to me and the exact same recycled aluminium keep cup ordered a coffee at the same café as me? And no Bretts yelled out "Hey, that's my keep cup!" as I walked out, screwing the lid on to cover the thick layer of chocolate powder sprinkled across the top.
Am I subconsciously sabotaging my own coffee orders, and requesting chocolate on top without even any memory of it? Or does my deep voice in a noisy café saying "flat white" sound like - when half-drowned out by the milk frother - I'm saying "cappuccino"?
Well, powered by caffeine and cocoa, I picked up where I left off yesterday in trying to improve the performance of a flow that needs to generate a 700MB file with 96MB of java heap. And I did make a lot of progress. I had to pause mid afternoon for my follow up with the rheumatologist, who confirmed that I don't currently have rheumatoid arthritis. I worked this out during our initial consultation when he was poking around at my bones. My finger still swells up when it's cold, and despite no almonds since autumn I am now entering my seventeenth spring of chronic back pain. Neither of these things are caused by an autoimmune condition or lupus. That's good. He did say I have a remarkably straight thoracic spine. He said people would "kill for it". I hope not, it would be worse than back pain.
I googled it later today, and maybe it is not a good thing. There's something called flat back syndrome (not cappuccino back syndrome) that can cause lower back pain and/or heart conditions. Am I going to need to spend another $400 on specialists to get told there's nothing to worry about again? Maybe.
I returned to an office in glorious sunlight. I was walking fast so I could get back to benchmarking, and also because I forgot my headphones when I left. I realised when I was in the elevator down at 2:20pm and I didn't go back up because my appointment was at 2:40pm. I arrived at 2:39pm, and the doctor called my name (not Brett's) at 3pm. So I could have gone back to get the headphones. If I'd done this my ears would have been a lot warmer though by the time I got back.
I spent the rest of the afternoon testing and tweaking acknowledgement timeout settings, before a call at 5pm which delayed my bike ride home until 5:30pm. This made me a little uneasy, as the sun felt a lot darker than it actually was - especially in the canyons of Adelaide's central business district, and I didn't want to get hit by a car. I felt my usual sense of relief when I reached the Torrens path where I would be out of reach for most cars for the rest of the way home. Every time I had a view to the north I felt a nice, warm breeze. The sky, in the golden hour, was all sorts of vibrant shades of orange, pink and yellow. Fluffy clouds lined the horizon, which looked beautiful. But I was wearing my sunglasses the whole way because I don't want any more bugs in my eyes. However the polarised lenses muted the colours quite a bit and made the clouds look like the plain, frothed milk on the top of a flat white.