This is my last PSL update until Monday. Whatever else I am willing to bear, I shall not sully my weekends with the “Pumpkin” “Spice” of this drink.
Today’s ordering went much more smoothly. I am beginning to feel like an old hand at ordering in Starbucks. Something about the atmosphere in there… all of us coming together, grouping as one for a brief moment of early-morning sanctuary, fighting the good fight for wakefulness and productivity. It feels almost like a second home now. It feels almost like home.
I am beginning to develop some tolerance, I feel, to the PSL. As I ruminated on its flavours this morning, it occurred to me that there is, in fact, no Pumpkin or Pumpkin Spice taste to it at all. What little flavour it has (and let me emphasize little – there is almost none) is actually more of an aftertaste. With a sip of the concoction still in your mouth, you can almost forget the titular seasoning was meant to be there at all. It is after you have swished and swallowed the drink that the spice syrup starts to cloy at the back of your throat. It hangs there vanishingly, and it is easy to forget what it is, what it is supposed to be, and from whence it came after just a moment. It pops up again, throughout the morning, reminding you of your earlier sins. The way the sting of a small scratch delivered by a lover in an emphatic bout of lovemaking might bring you back to that happy moment, the bitter artificial aftertaste of the Pumpkin Spice Latte clinging to the back of your throat reminds you, again and again, of that piece of you that has been surrendered, sacrificed, almost forgotten.
This weekend I am heading to the beach, in order to better clear my head of the daily toils of the working week, and refresh myself to come at the PSL challenge anew for the second week. I bid you farewell, and hope that I have served at least as a warning post swinging atop a broken fencepost on the path to corporate coffee drinks.