Sunday, August 30, 2015

40. Tea is all we need

I didn't used to be a tea fan. I had a classmate in law school who kept a tea bag in her wallet.  She would ask for hot water, which was free from the cafeteria, during breaks, and she would enjoy her cup with a dash of calamansi and a biscuit on the side. I tried it once then,  but I thought it was too complex for me who was used to caffein-laced soda and coffee. Many years later, after I have established my law firm, somebody gifted me with a box of chamomile tea. I served it to clients in the office and tried it once. It came to me then that my taste buds were now ready for that kind of sophistication.  I sought out other flavors: English Breakfast, Earl Grey, Chai, Black, Green, and Mint. My wife got me a tea caddie, and the caddie presented the various tea flavors we have collected to clients. Often, while discussing strategies in business and litigation, my clients and I would enjoy pot after pot of tea until the work was done. Recently, I was introduced to a brand of tea called, Basilur, which offered a mix of fruits and flowers. Taking it is like tasting the grand orchestra of teas: a little sweetness there, a little citrus, lots of flowers, some dark shades, vanilla, and some mint. They all come together beautifully in one package.  I served it once to clients after dinner, and we stayed up until one o'clock in the morning, working with the tea as our only elixir of energy. Looking back, tea is one of the oldest commodities traded in the world. The taxation of tea even led to the American Revolution in the affair known as the Boston Tea Party. Yet, with all the magical sophistication of this drink which established its reputation as the drink of commerce and politics, the power of tea is its ability to bring you to your senses. Of all the teas I've tasted nothing compares with the tea that a Chinese nun gave me; it was black tea mixed with brown rice. I took it one afternoon, and instantly I felt being transported to my hometown, relaxed and easy, and with no worries. Never mind the business and the politics. Tea is all we need. 


northwolf said...

I've been a tea longer for just as long as I've been a coffee drinker, although for that instant caffeine jolt, coffee is my poison of choice. I mostly take tea to relax or to cleanse my palate.

My favorites are Genmaicha green tea (the one with rice), Assam black tea, peppermint and our own salabat.

marvin said...

I've tried sambong on the prodding of a Sumilao farmer. I think it even has medicinal powers.