The cup of coffee I’ve just had was rather lovely. Instead of going for instant or having a machine do it, I took the time so grind the beans, slowly pour the hot water over the granules and leave it to brew. It took several minutes to prepare but the wait was worth it. A fantastic tasting beverage that could be savoured rather than simply gulped down.

When things are hand crafted, whether food and drink, novels and writing, music or anything that is made in some way, you can see and taste the love, care and attention that has gone into the making.

And when it is you yourself that has put in the work, the taste is all the sweeter. The preparation has created a sense of anticipation. And the reward is the outcome but in many respects that’s just the icing on the cake. There is a joy to be had in the exercise of a skill, no matter what that skill is and how trivial it may seem to others.

There is a suggestion that the rise of automation and AI will put humans largely out of work. That certainly is a fear to be sure, but perhaps we will come full circle in the Industrial Revolution and return to being a workforce of crafts people. Let the machines do the boring work a leave the creativity and special attention to the humans.