What drives you?
Less than 5 years ago I was laughed out of a coffee shop for not knowing how to cup coffee, turned expensive coffees into charcoal on a regular basis, and thought espresso was a type of coffee bean. I was put in charge of a roasting operation doing 50,000 pounds a year with no training in business and very little roasting experience. I worked 12 hour days roasting, packaging, and delivering coffee with no clue at any point on what to do next. All I knew is I had to do better every day. I've had relationships suffer from my obsessive quest and have come to the point of madness more times than I would care to admit. I've watched former friends/co-workers quit to leave for other coffee companies or more money in "suitable" jobs. I have watched power houses in the coffee industry simply vanish and become born again real-estate agents driving minivans. The coffee industry asks more than most are willing to give. Then why do myself and so many others subject themselves to this inhumane treatment? I believe it is because we have found intention.
The coffee industry attracts the obsessives, the creatives, the misfits. Troubled, misunderstood, highly intelligent. Like the lost boys of coffee who found their own version of Never Never Land. These are people I surround myself with now and I have learned you are absolutely everything you surround yourself with.
Six month before I started working for Goshen Coffee I spent 33 days in jail when my past caught up with me. I lived a life I was not proud of and my life was driven by fear. I needed coffee to find me. Fast forward to the present: Goshen Coffee has had a top 3 placing in Brewer's Cup, multiple Best Espressos, and numerous roasting competitions. We have managed to double our roasting in 4 years while keeping a staff of 3 people. I have traveled to high mountains of Peru to visit farmers struggling to survive. I now co-own a coffee company. I wake up every morning with intention now. All of this possible because of coffee.
I turned 30 this year and with that have been doing a lot of reflecting on life. Long ponderings over late nights, coffee in hand. I don't beat myself up over the "what ifs" or "I should haves" anymore. I've worked really hard to get where I am and found a fire and passion in me much greater than I could have imagined. This magical elixir opened my eyes to a whole new world. Coffee gave me intention.