Saturday, April 23, 2005

Steeped in Warmth

I found the above on a blog written by someone who left a comment here. Tea. A topic to which I can relate.

I'm a tea drinker who slums. I have the temerity to like Lipton and Celestial Seasonings. I believe that people who really take their tea seriously will protest that Herbal Tea is not technically tea at all. It makes me feel sad -- like Sleepy Time and Red Zinger are the redheaded step-children. Orphans. Unwanted. Unloved. (I will never become so much of a snob to turn my back on them though -- I will adopt you!)

The thing is, whether these drinks are all technically tea or not, they all tend to have something healthy about them -- usually loaded with more anti-oxidants than even fruits and veggies. It's funny how many natural things are just that -- good for you naturally.

I know there's a cliche of Brits all having a bracing cup of tea whenever something goes "amiss," but there's truth there for me. A hot cup of tea is soothing, like a hug, like being wrapped in quilts on a winter's night -- like the concept of home.

While I never liked the taste of tea as a child, my grandmother made me drink it whenever I was sick. Tea with lemon and honey. The lemon cuts through the "yuck" and the honey soothes the throat. Somewhere along the line I came to believe that the tea was there to soothe the soul.

Is there a better feeling than feeling the heat of the tea seeping through the mug and warming your hands? (Okay, maybe so -- but I'm talking while clothed!) And then you sip the tea and feel the warmth spread. It's simple, and inexpensive, and all the more wonderful for it's simplicity and availibility.

This is a shout-out to all the tea drinkers! What's your favorite type? How do you like to drink it? Is there a ritual? A special cup or mug? (My current favorite is rooibus.)

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