It’s 105 degrees in Phoenix and tomorrow will be about the same. My air conditioning died last night. It wasn’t totally unexpected, as a matter of fact the new one should have been installed days ago, but you know how that goes…unforeseen circumstances…
When you sit and simmer, you try to think of pleasant, icy cold things, at least I do.
Let me confess that I’m no fan of soda pop, regardless of brand or flavor. I’m convinced it’s like escargots and artichokes, an acquired taste.
The first time I tasted Coca Cola was during an Italian summer. Can’t remember the year, but I must have been over eighteen because I was taking driving lessons at the local driving school. And I had a friend, rather older than I was, who would pick me up after class to drive me home. The man was from Switzerland, he spoke Italian with a charming mix of accents and he was a bit of a celebrity among the town people because he was a pilot. He only flew private planes for the rich and famous. One of his best clients ran a big business close by and so my friend kept a suite at the fancy hotel in town and when he was there he often drove me to dinners or to shows he had discovered thanks to his line of works. We were friends, no more no less, looking back he may have been gay, not that it mattered. Of course the whole town thought otherwise about our relationship.
One Saturday afternoon, other pilots, from various countries, came to visit him and they drove up to a mountain Hotel to escape the summer heat…A few had brought wives or girlfriends so I tagged along. Some of them ordered drinks I’d never heard of and then my friend asked for Rum and Coke, okay it was Rum and Coca Cola. And that’s how I discovered I’m not crazy about Rum or Coca Cola. By the way, Italy doesn’t have laws regarding underage drinking at least not back then. If I really, really must drink some kind of soda I tend to pick Seven Up or Mountain Dew, then I close my eyes and pretend I’m drinking San Pellegrino. Salute.