I drink it.
I bathe in it.
I'm obsessed with it.
If I haven't had a cup of tea then it is a bad day indeed.
I didn't come from a family of tea drinkers, didn't have teddy
bear tea parties as a kid. I didn't get the pleasure of meeting any
Brits or learn the wonderful custom of taking tea just because until
much later in life. So what do I owe this decades long passionate love affair to?
Star Trek turned me on to tea.
Earl Grey. Hot.
When they wrote that into the show I'm guessing they didn't expect to
inspire the next generation of tea drinkers but I'm sure I'm not the only
one who started down the way of tea because of our love of Star Trek:
The Next Generation. I was fascinated by the way Picard ordered this tea and what was this Earl Grey? I had to find out.
I remember going to the library to search for the answer. Keep in mind this was pre-computer late 80s, so
going to the library meant searching through the card catalogue. Needless to say it took a little while for me
to find a book about tea and for the life of me I don't remember what book it was. I do remember I used my
own money when I finally found it in one of the 3 local grocery stores I went to. I even saved it until the next schedule airing of the show. Being from the US South...most tea is little more than highly sweetened brown
water so this was like nothing I'd ever had before so I read the directions so I would know exactly how to brew it.
As soon as I opened the box I could smell the bergamot.
At my first sip, my eyes rolled back and closed with the pleasure of the warm liquid in my mouth.
I was hooked and I wanted more.
English Tea house, my first of many afternoon teas.
It was there I discovered how golden amber streams of tea swirling in delicate china combined with a mixture of savory and sweet delicacies
to entice the senses while allowing conversation to flow like a river flows
to the vast ocean.
I drank deeply of the connections made that day. I've taken the
lessons of tea with me everywhere making oceans of tea to celebrate,
to comfort, to warm, to heal, and to soothe. To be alone with my thoughts, or to connect heart to heart with new friends and old, tea and tea parties have become the essence of who I am.
That's the spirit I try to bring into writing on my Leaves of Wisdom blog and in my newsletter.