A friend who once taught English to KLM flight attendants found them exceptionally wide-eyed and eager, perhaps because most were in the very job they had wanted since they were little. So whenever I spot one of their silhouettes around Amsterdam—neatly coiffed, full-length swing coat creating a serene azure aura—I imagine that satisfaction of fulfilling a childhood occupational dream. It is easy to think the same about cafe owners whose command of the espresso bar is so strong and steadfast it appears to be the manifestation of some long-destined reality. But the truth is that is seldom the case in this new world of new wave coffee. No matter: as the founders of Trakteren in Amsterdam West have proved, dedication in the here and now makes up for not being born with a cupping spoon in hand.
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