It was supposed to be just a casual meeting. At three thirty this morning I woke up after only three and a half hours sleep knowing I had to write about him.
I met Michael Coyle who goes by Mik for coffee in Patricia Green after work yesterday. We had been talking about a meeting to discuss perfume and his new perfume line Mikmoi since we had met a few weeks ago at the Artisan Fragrance Salon. On my way to our meeting there were a few texts from Mik that I missed since my phone was turned off. But something told me to check. “I am on my way but Muni underground is backed up.”
I walked on through the little needle park that is Patricia Green at the terminus of interstate 80 that we call Octavia Boulevard. Young mothers watched their children playing on the jungle gym. Hipsters were meeting at the pop up beer garden; dogs off their leases were having a field day casing pigeons. Sunny but not warm it was a lovely beginning of a spring weekend in San Francisco.
I looked up and down the park as I walked. There was no sign of Mik. I checked my phone. “Missed Call”. I dialed the number that had to be Mik’s.
“Where are you?”
“I am at Ritual Coffee.”
My favorite Coffee Popup, Ritual Coffee
We both turned around at the same time and were facing each other. With a simultaneous laugh we met.
Our conversation began as we ordered our coffee. Mik is a fascinating urbane charming man. He is a self described “Glass half full” kind of man and so am I. Therefore our conversation over the next hour and a half over flowed. He told me about his life and how he came to become a perfumer. Since it was just a casual meeting I didn’t take notes and we agreed on a formal interview at a later date.
Mik is all about diversity and inclusion not only in his day job but in his life and ultimately his perfume. His roots are in upstate New York but early on he heard the call of a much wider and more exciting Technicolor world of adventure and travel.
Mik of Mikmoi (photo from Mikmoi website)
He has lived in London, the French Alps, Hong Kong and Bangkok just to mention a few stops along the way. And he has been until now an unmet neighbor of mine for many years. His international life has been an ongoing education for him to an ever widening understanding of other cultures and customs. Mik has opened himself to new ideas of exploration in human diversity and the rejection of stereotypes. During our visit I discovered that he has a passion for language as well as perfume and all things Japanese. I asked him if Mikmoi was a Japanese word. He explained that it is not Japanese but an amalgam of Mik and Moi the French for Me. Mikmoi, I am Mik.
He told me more about his website and how he came to become a perfumer. His studies with Mandy Aftel in natural perfumery and with Yosh Han have been invaluable in his journey into his new olfactory passion. Before our visit came to an end Mik invited me for a visit to his studio. So perfume has again worked it’s magic in my life and brought a new friend to me. I look forward to many more meetings with Mik and a chance to have a proper sit-down interview to share with you. For any of you who are in the Seattle area Mik will be at the Seattle Artisan Fragrance Salon in Seattle next weekend.
A wonderful video of the launch of Mikmoi at Artisan Fragrance Salon.
MIKMOI website: http://www.mikmoi.com/