Like any well oiled machine, you start the day off by greasing up the joints. The brown liquid flows like hot waterfall, steam rising as it cascades over the glass ridge of the carafe. There’s a quiet splashing sound against the ceramic and your spoon clinks into the walls like an indoor wind chime. You take that first sip and dopamine rushes through you — today’s first fix. Sugar and caffeine are drugs all the same.
Outside, the world emits a deep howling as the wind blows through the yard and rattles tree branches against the house. Sip your coffee a little faster, hug your sweater a little tighter. If the sun was out, the sheet of ice on the yard would sparkle like a thin cut crystal. But instead, the dull grey sky is reflected in the cracked, slightly slushy surface.
A whine from the dog breaks your concentration on the suburban tundra scene before you. You whip around to see a small pair of eyes staring up at you longingly. The light scratch of his paws on the tile floor juxtaposes the heavy thud of your rubber bottom slippers as you meet each other in the middle of the kitchen.
“Wanna see the snow?” you ask your little buddy as you scoop him up, his head now parallel with the window. Mother Nature lets out another whispered scream and the window creaks as the cold air sneaks through. The puppy whimpers and buries his head in the crook of your neck as you scurry out of the kitchen and pad toward the warmth of the couch.