Nearly 20 years ago, before weddings and kids, my now-husband and I had a dream. We talked about it often and it went something like this: someday when we're older, more stable and focused, let's invest in a coffee shop. "It will be different," I would say.
Instead of attracting the fast-paced commuters during rush hour, or the disheveled parents en route to too-early Saturday soccer games, our shop would cater to farmers, yes! After all, in southwestern Ohio, farmers do make up the vast majority of coffee consumers (in contrast to the masses who opt for sweet iced tea). Plus, they're the best kind to sit down with and have a cup or two. Hey, I know, maybe we could even build a drive-thru big enough to accommodate semis and tractors. Heh. Someday.
Fast-forward 20 years, and things have changed.
Now WE are farmers, living it up on a grain farm in beloved southwest Ohio. Raising our two kids on the promise of open spaces and with the hope of transferring some sort of work ethic, we till and plant and feed and water and harvest. We have joined that majority of steady coffee consumers we once admired (no worries, we opt for sweet tea on occasion, too).
And, so, in our way-early planting and harvesting mornings, with cups in hands, we sip--just like the rest--standing clustered around a not-so-fresh pot at the gas station because, well, at least it's hot. And this will endure us for the long, hard day? Really? This can't be.
So I said, "Hey, what if we do something radical?"
What if we buy a coffee truck designed to handle the backroads of places like Leesburg, Ohio, equip it with the tools we need to produce solid, no-nonsense coffee, roast our own beans so we can tweak them to local tastes, and begin our longtime-dream adventure? And to boot (pun well intended), we'll call it "Fertile Grounds Coffee and Roastery" in the spirit of farmers.
Sure, we'll have specialty fru-fru drinks for those who'd like a try, but we won't give them ridiculous names (e.g. vanilla fantasia). And, while we can't promise our cup of joe will resemble at all the gas station variety, we will do our best to stay focused and real.
So when you see a flash of white and what looks like a livestock trailer (it's not, we promise), and smell freshly roasted coffee beans when it passes, and of course this reminds you that you haven't had a good cup in some time, just holler.
We'll whip a u-ey, just for you.
More stories from the road to come...