The Loop Newspaper - Tehachapi's Online Community News & Entertainment Guide

By Mel White 

Carrots, eggs and coffee

On the Bright Side


May 25, 2019

Mel White

Time to share another one of those little stories that shows up every now and then on my computer screen. I especially loved this one the minute I read it and knew I had to pass it on. It's sort of a fable about carrots, eggs and coffee ... well, you'll see. Read on:

A young woman went to her father and shared with him her life and heart, how things had been so difficult for her lately and how she found herself tempted to give up. She was emotionally tired of fighting and struggling. It seemed to her that as soon as one of her struggles got resolved, a new one "popped up."

Her father took her into their kitchen, where he filled three pots with water. In the first pot, he placed some carrots, in the second one, he placed some eggs and in the third pot, he placed some ground coffee beans. He let them sit and boil without saying a word, then in about 20 minutes, he turned off the burners.

Her father fished out the carrots and placed them into a bowl. He pulled the eggs out and placed them into another bowl, then he ladled the coffee into yet another bowl. Turning to his struggling daughter, he asked, "Tell me, what do you see?"

"Carrots, eggs and coffee," his daughter replied.

He brought his daughter closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noticed that they were now soft. He told his daughter to break an egg, which she did, and after removing the shell, she saw that the egg was now hard-boiled. Finally, he told his daughter to sip the coffee. The daughter smiled as she tasted the rich flavor, then asked, "What's the point, Dad?"

Her father explained that each of the three objects had faced the very same adversity – boiling water – but each had reacted differently.

The carrot went in strong, hard and unrelenting. However, after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened, and became weak. The egg had been fragile to begin with. Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior, but after sitting through the boiling water, the egg insides became hardened.

The ground coffee beans were unique, however. After they were in the boiling water, they had changed the water!

"Now, which are you?" he simply asked his daughter. "When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?"

Good question, folks. Every now and then I think we should all ask ourselves these questions:

Am I like the carrot, appearing to be strong, but with pain and adversity will I wilt and become soft and lose strength?

Am I an egg that starts out with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat? Did I have a fluid spirit, but after a death, a breakup, a financial hardship or some other trial, have I become hardened and stiff? Does my shell look the same on the outside, but on the inside am I bitter with a stiff spirit and a hardened heart?

Or am I like the coffee bean, the one that actually changes the water, that changes the very circumstances that brings the pain? When things seem to be at their worst, do I respond positively, like the coffee bean, releasing my fragrance and flavor in the hot water?

Am I a carrot, or an egg or a coffee bean?

© Marilda Mel White. Mel White, local writer/photographer, co-owner of the Treasure Trove and coffee bean wanna-be, has been looking on the bright side for various publications since 1996. She welcomes your comments at [email protected]


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