Island Living has many challenges and many benefits. This weekend is another example of an island life benefit. We are invited to a wedding in the Philippines by the beach!
The other day, we had an unexpected visitor drop by. A friendly neighbor and a young lady whom we did not know... and they had something to ask us. "Would you mind coming to this young lady's wedding? Oh, and we want you to be her God Parents." Wanting to be good neighbors in the community, we said, "Sure, we'll be there".
Today is the wedding day, and as luck would have it, we are in the midst of a typhoon. Lots of rain, wind, and no electricity.
The wedding starts at 9am, and it's now 815am... and Rose and I are just waking up. We quickly get dressed, grab a fresh banana and dash to the car in the pouring rain. As we exit the driveway, we see a small parade of neighbors starting their 3 mile trek to the church - they are going to the wedding too. "Would you like a ride to the church?" Of course they say 'Yes', and we begin packing 9 more people into our 5 passenger Mitsubishi. Nobody complains. In fact, everyone is laughing, and happy not to be walking in the pouring rain. I smile and realize this is one of those enjoyable Filipino moments, where people are happy to be helping other people.
As the ceremony is about to ceremony is about to begin, we arrive laughing and quickly unload into the church to avoid the torrential rain. Entering the church, we discover that it's not only us trying to avoid the rain, but it's also birds, cats, dogs, and lizards. Life in the tropics. Fortunately no one is bothered by the additional attendees.
The wedding planner gives us our instructions as the music begins - acoustic guitars and wonderful Filipino voices. This music sounds so good that I would have just came to enjoy the production.
We file up the aisle and into our seats. My favorite part of this procession is watching the tiny flower girls dropping tropical flower petals in their wake. It's super cute.
Obviously the bride and groom are supposed to be the focal point... but I'm easily distracted by the flying birds, the roving dogs that are sniffing around, and the flower girls starting a flower fight with the ring barers. I enjoy the moment of wedding ceremony irony.
My attention is refocused as I hear, "You may kiss the bride!" It was an awkward moment for the couple but they eventually kiss (and I wonder if it was their first kiss ever).
To the reception
And the typhoon is raging as we scurry under an awning for the reception. Waves are crashing, coconuts are falling from the trees, and people are still smiling and enjoying the moment.
And the microphone is put in my hand. I am told I am to make an impromptu speech. Ugh, think quick!
"Today we are witnessing: Raging wind, Crashing waves, Drenching rain. It's symbolic of challenges that a couple can face during a marriage. The other thing we are witnessing is faith that the challenges will only be temporary, and that good weather is only a day away. This is true in relationships. We must have faith to carry us throw the bad times. We must have perseverance to help us weather these storms. We must appreciate our community to help support and encourage us to do the right thing.
And the right thing to do now is for everyone to raise their glasses and make a toast to this Happy and Loving couple."
I don't know what I just said, but at least I am sipping wine on the beach with the love of my life - my wife Rose.
Thanks for reading. If you like our stories, please show your support by purchasing our 100% pure exotic coffee at Going Native Coffee Club (click here)
written by Greg Pasden
World Traveler, Coffee Entrepreneur
Best Selling Author
, coffee news, tags: Island Life, island wedding, philippines wedding, filipino wedding, typhoon in the philippines, beach life, beach wedding, expat life
Why Do I Love Celebrating Christmas in the Philippines more than I do in the USA?
Let me step back a few years... Ok, maybe a few decades. When I was a child celebrating Christmas, there were lots of decorations & displays in the malls, lots of excitement to sit on Santa's lap and let him know what was on my wish list, and lots of Christmas shows on television. Wow, Christmas is glitzy and exciting.
As I got older, I slowly realized that the decorations & displays were there to make me want to visit the mall, that Santa was there so we would visit the mall, that the shows on TV had enticing commercials, so we would visit the mall. Wow, and if you didn't get the latest gizmo, gadget, fad-ish type item, well then you just weren't in the Christmas Spirit (guilt), a 'Scrooge', or a 'Grinch'.
Now... Let me leap forward to September 1st 2018.
Children are hanging Christmas decorations in the streets, on their homes, in the churches, in the public square. People are having sporting competitions to celebrate Christmas. People are harvesting food, buying food, and confectionaries. Do you notice any differences in the 2 cultures?
Some may need to read the 1st paragraph again.
Here are the differences that I immediately noticed in the 2 cultures. I see that the decorations are in the places where people gather and meet, the activities are to bring people together, and the shopping is so that people can share time and a meal together. Notice, nothing is about gadgets, toys, gizmos, fashion, or the latest fad. It's about something more human. Something more basic. Something that everyone can share and appreciate. It's Friendship and camaraderie.
During this season, we threw and attended numerous Christmas parties filled with parlor games for everyone - adults, children and foreign guests (this year we had 3 foreign guests from South Korea).
And the pinnacle of the Christmas season happens at mid-night on Christmas Eve. It's an event called Noche Buena. Family and friends get together to share a festive meal. Yes, I say festive because it involves laughing, singing, dancing, adult beverages, and a huge feast of food. And custom has it that after the late night meal, the gather attends mass - in memoranda of the birth of the Christ child.
On Christmas morning, my wife and I celebrated that we were together as a family, and we also shared a single gift with our daughter. After we had breakfast and fresh coffee (from Going Native Coffee Club), we - as a family - took gift bags of various candies to the homes of the less affluent areas. This is called 'Sharing the Blessings'. The smiles and gratitude from the people we met can touch one's soul and enrich the Christmas experience. It's something I will never forget, and something that I will always want to do every Christmas.
Merry Christmas from the Philippines & Happy New Year!
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1. NOT USING FRESH COFFEE BEANS
It is easier to tell stale coffee beans but the old-but-not-stale ones may be hard to identify and they can drastically affect the quality of your brew. If the coffee beans sit for too long on the shelves, the volatile compounds will slowly dissipate resulting in a bland cup of coffee.
Buy fresh, just like you do with green leafy vegetables, milk, and bread. When you buy roasted coffee beans next time, make sure you it is recently roasted - At Going Native Coffee Club we roast in the morning and ship it to you in the afternoon. An important tip is to drink your coffee when it’s still hot because the chemical reactions that continue post brewing process can ruin your coffee.
Going Native Coffee Beans are roasted fresh in the morning and shipped that afternoon to your door.
2. BUYING CHEAP COFFEE INSTEAD OF BUYING QUALITY BEANS
The attractive discount on low-brand coffee beans may look tempting and urge you to save money on your daily cuppa, but think again. Do you really want to put price over quality to have a grimace on your face as you sip on your morning coffee?
Keep cost cutting for other not so important things in life. A cup of coffee can make or break your day, so spare yourself the nightmare of bargain coffee at the supermarket just to save a couple of collars. Buy only the premium quality beans that feel great on your taste buds!
Going Native Coffee Club coffee beans consistently are scored 95% or higher.
3. NOT MAINTAINING THE RIGHT WATER-GROUND RATIO WHILE BREWING
When you wake up six in the morning and kick yourself out of bed reluctantly, you may not be in the mood to do any calculations. If you carelessly toss a few spoons into the filter and pour water without measuring, chances are your cup of mud will taste terrible.
While your taste buds may excuse your early morning mistakes, spare a moment for the right measurements on other occasions. I would suggest that you invest in a kitchen scale. Keep a measuring scoop accessible so that you can treat yourself with a spectacular cup of coffee every morning.
Tip - If you make you coffee to strong for your liking, then you can always add more hot water after the coffee is made. But you cannot make weak coffee stronger.
Have another Cup of Going Native Coffee... We'll Roast more.
Thank You for reading.
Can I ask you a favor? If you like our articles, please show your Love of Coffee and make a purchase from Going Native Coffee Club. Thank You!
Tags: coffee news, coffee tips, coffee blog, coffee beans, coffee subscription, coffee gifts
As a coffee farmer, I'm compelled to share Where Coffee Beans get Their Flavor Notes.
Coffee is just very complex, arguably the mostcomplex food humans ingest (roughly 1500 chemical compounds in your cup). I'll try to keep this as clear as possible. No attempt at being pretentious here either.
What influences the nature and make up of these constituents?
1) Terroir - The land (soil composition, pH), water composition, the amount & timing of precipitation, temperature, elevation, latitude, shade / sun, etc.
2) Cultivation - Fertilizer regimen / nutrition (organic, biodynamic, synthetic, etc.), irrigation, pesticides / herbicides / fungicides, etc.
3) Varietal - Like wine (pinot noir, cabernet, etc.), coffee has varieties: typica, caturra, bourbon, gesha & hundreds more. These varieties have different characteristics (aroma, flavor, body, acidity) that change in response to 1) and 2).
4) Harvesting - Coffee is a fruit. What's sweeter: green, unripe bananas or yellow, ripe bananas? The same applies to coffee. There are different colors of ripe coffee, but ripe coffee will be sweeter, cleaner & smoother if properly grown, harvested, processed, roasted & brewed. (We teach everyone to only harvest when it's ripe).
5) Processing - This is perhaps one of the biggest factors determining flavor & aroma. Three main techniques are used: wet / washed, semi-wash / honey, & natural / dried-in-the-fruit.
- The wet method tends to showcase acidity & terroir. The coffee seed (bean) is "washed" by way of removing the fruit skin & pulp (mucilage) surrounding it. This is done in one of several ways: via fermentation, with or without water, or via mechanical removal. The result is an experience true to the variety's response to its circumstances (as mentioned above).
- The semi-washed / honey method is when the coffee flesh is removed but the thin, sweet mucilage layer of pectin / sugar surrounding the bean remains intact while the bean dries. This tends to enhance sweetness, slightly round the acidity & provide heavier body / mouthfeel (usually my favorite style of processing for most coffees).
- Natural processing is when the coffee fruit is harvested & put out to dry, fully intact with its fruit skin surrounding the bean. This results in a very fruit-forward flavor & aroma, often like berries. This method tends to mask or overpower other subtle attributes you might taste in a washed version of the exact same coffee; however, that's certainly not always the case.
6) Drying - Too hot and fast, the coffee tends to have woody, papery flavors. Too slow and incomplete, it will taste moldy / musty. So getting it right comes from experience and knowing the environment.
7) Storage - If properly dried (slowly & evenly), coffee can last 10-14 months in storage with little to no loss of "fresh" quality if the conditions are stable. But taste is subjective. The longer it sits in storage, & depending on the conditions, the more faded the acidity, the heavier the body & the woodier / muskier the flavors. It's all about what you want to experience. The age of coffee can have dramatic results on the cup.
8) Roasting - If you roast too dark, coffee pretty much all tastes very similar -- like carbon -- because what's happened to the organic compounds that give coffee its distinction is that they've been carbonized (which is far beyond caramelization). Once again, this is simply a matter of personal preference. But roasting can ultimately determine whether or not you taste toffee or peaches from the exact same bag of coffee. Everything could have been done to perfection up until this point & then totally ruined with poor, careless roasting. So, roasting is the art & science of presentation: enhancing the desirable intrinsic features while subduing the undesirable (this includes flavor, body, sweetness, acidity, aftertaste, & intensity of all these attributes).
9) Brewing - Pretty self-explanatory... err, well, no. Here are the factors / variables that influence cup quality & attributes:
- The grind: both size and consistency
- The water: temperature, hardness / softness, pH
- Time: length of contact / exposure of coffee to water
- Pressure: espresso, Aeropress, mocha pot, siphon
- Type of exposure: drip, full-immersion (i.e. french press),
- Filtration (or lack of)
I hope this helps you understand where Coffee Beans get their flavor notes.
Enjoy another cup of Going Native Coffee... We'll Roast more.
If you are a coffee lover, then please click here to visit our sponsor - Going Native Coffee
It's almost Christmas!
Do you need a last minute Christmas gift?
Don't panic. This is my Easiest & Best Solution to last minute gift shopping.
The Coffee eGift Cards from Going Native Coffee Club.
Click HERE or go to www.GoingNativeCoffeeClub.com and start shopping.
Feel Good about your purchase. With each purchase, you are helping & promoting sustainable coffee farming in remote coffee regions around the world.
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Rose and I like good coffee. Unfortunately, the coffee that is primarily sold around these islands is instant coffee or coffee that is so bad, that I would rather spit it out than drink it. So what do coffee lovers do when they can't buy a good coffee from the market? The answer was simple. We started our own coffee farm.
Fortunately for me, Rose's family has been growing coffee for generations... and Rose has a huge family. Dozens of aunts and uncles and hundreds of cousins. This came in handy because we were able to curate coffee from their farms and friends farms from around the country and around the globe.
What Rose showed me is that coffee beans need to be harvested when they look and feel ripe. "If they look and feel good, then your coffee will taste good."
How is this different from other commercial coffees from around the world?
Many commercial coffee companies tell the farmers to just strip every single bean from the coffee plant - be it ripe or unripe. This means that the coffee is not going to taste as good as it should. Rose says, "It's like comparing a hotdog to a steak."
Next is the precision roasting process
Since we only want excellent roasted coffee beans, we knew we needed precise coffee roasting. Fortunately we have friends in sunny southern California who are artisans and only use state-of-the-art microbat coffee roasting equipment that maximizes the roasted flavors and aromas. (They even look and dress like surgeons).
When we receive your order, your coffee is roasted in the morning and shipped that afternoon. We want to ensure you never have to reach for a stale bag of coffee again.
1. Make really good coffee
2. Support the coffee growers & harvesters so that we have really great coffee today and for future coffee lovers
Our goals are focussed on the coffee lovers and the coffee growers - not about corporate profits and company stock.
Taking care of people - who love coffee from start to finish - is our primary focus.
Boasting on our Roasting
Our coffee consistently scores in the top 95% or better. What this means is that our customers are enjoying high quality, excellent coffee. Just the way we like it.
If you want to be a part of our Coffee Tribe of coffee lovers, then:
1. Try some of our exotic single origin and blend coffees,
2. Let others know about Going Native Coffee Club.
Greg & Rose (coffee lovers with a heart)
tags: coffee, coffee beans, espresso beans, coffee gifts, going native coffee, single origin coffee, organic coffee, exotic coffee, sustainable coffee, ethical coffee, coffee business, coffee affiliate links, coffee affiliate program
Sometimes Christmas shopping can be stressful. I always wished that last minute Christmas shopping could be easy and fast.
This is why we made it an option at Going Native Coffee Club so you can avoid:
How do we make Gifting Fast & Easy:
------- Christmas Shopping Fast & Easy!
But what if you have a Large Christmas Gift List?
If you have a large Christmas gift list, Going Native Coffee can make it easy & fast. Just send them your gift list and let Going Native Coffee do all the work for you (and the prices are exactly the same).
So if you ever want to make gift giving simple & fast, then visit
Going Native Coffee Club www.GoingNativeCoffeeClub.com
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Papua New Guinea A/X has to be one of my personal favorite coffees to drink.
Send your taste buds on a journey to paradise with every sip of this tropical bliss. Papua New Guinea coffee is highly prized for its complex, full flavors thanks to the rich soils and idyllic growing conditions.
Our Papua New Guinea A/X coffee is curated from family-owned farms organized around the Highlands Organic Agriculture Cooperative (HOAC) located in the Okapa district within the province of Eastern Highlands, Papua New Guinea. HOAC members come from a number of different indigenous groups including the North Fore and South Fore, tribes that have come together in HOAC despite a long history of conflict. HOAC accesses the international coffee markets for farmers to have greater earning capacity from direct trade relationships. HOAC has also invested in coffee processing equipment to improve quality, and infrastructure projects to improve roads, access to potable water, and build schools in rural communities.
Order yours today. It will be roasted in the morning and shipped in the afternoon.
Flavor Notes of Papua New Guinea A/X
Enjoy the tropical flavors of Honey, Coconut & Pineapple. Awaken your senses with the aroma of sweet honey as this medium roast delivers subtle hints of coconut and pineapple.
Papua New Guinea has a flavor profile that lends itself very well to espresso. We encourage you to try it! Send your taste buds to paradise.
Join of Coffee Tribe by ordering a bag of Papua New Guinea A/X today (click here)
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Enjoy the Hilarious Adventures of my Move to the Philippines
See More ->> HERE
DISCLOSURE: SOME OF THE LINKS ARE AFFILIATE LINKS AND PROVIDE COMPENSATION & HELP FUND THIS WEBSITE AT NO ADDITIONAL COST TO YOU.PLEASE HELP SUPPORT THIS WEBSITE THROUGH OUR ADVERTISERS & AFFILIATES.