The steam has been rising from the cup in front of you for almost five minutes now. After watching this visual exodus of heat, you can’t help but assume that the liquid has cooled enough for consumption. You give the surface a superstitious blow and bring the container to your lips.
With a gentle tilt, you permit just a dribble to enter your mouth. Too hot. Now you are passing the small bit of liquid from cheek to cheek while scanning your surroundings for a cold drink or a chunk of food to throw in the cauldron. Deep down, though, you know it’s too late. The tip of your tongue has been burned, and now the very drink you have been waiting to consume will taste sterile and bland. If only it understood the sabotage it has just performed.
Eventually you will recover, but the sting of losing this waiting game will linger and every bite of food will remind you that something is just a little bit off today.