In response to a question I am often asked . . . How did I become interested in tea? There is no specific experience that comes to mind. I have no interesting "first tea" story to share. I have always enjoyed tea and must admit that until eight years ago I never gave the where's, when's, and how's of tea much thought. Then the light bulb went on and I began to think about what I was drinking, where it came from, how it was processed, and most importantly the wellness of tea. Must have been a day when I had absolutely nothing else on my mind or immediately after having read a book where the main character drank a specific tea.
Today my life is filled with tea -- literally, physically, and spiritually. I guess I could honestly say that my love of books and reading also turned me into a tea person (aficionado, specialist, enthusiast -- take your pick). Many of the characters, both fictional and historical, I read about enjoy tea. Finding this interesting, I thought I need to know more about this thing called tea. I began to read more and discovered the more I read the more there was to know about this thing called tea. The need to know more lead me to the tea certification program.
The very first class I took through the The Speciality Tea Institute (www.teausa.org) was more than enough to entice to me to want more knowledge on tea and thus the beginning of my journey to become an STI Certified Tea Specialist. What they didn't tell me was there is no end to studying tea . . . thus I will always be a student of the leaf. Now with the renaissance of tea there is ample information available on tea . . . the growing, the processing, the preparation, the enjoyment, and the wellness benefits.
I am finding that tea has become my beverage of choice (in addition to water and wine). I enjoy it in the morning, with meals, as a cooling refreshment, as a warming refreshment, as an energizer, as a meditation tool, and most importantly as a major part of my personal wellness program. As a note on the wellness program . . . I do not add sugar to my teas and the only teas I add milk to are Chia and Thai teas. In my opinion, the only way to steep Chia tea is with milk, whole milk. Here again, the more one reads about tea the more convinced one has to be that tea contributes to any wellness program . . . as long as one consumes tea as nature intended without artificial additives. Nature is a great provider when left alone . . . so, why do humans insist on improving what Mother Nature provides . . . beats me.
In thinking about why tea . . . what other beverage, besides beer and wine, has the history that tea provides . . . I am thinking. Nope, cannot think of one. Tea has been around for thousands of years and has played an integral part in many historical events . . . the Opium Wars, America's Revolutionary War, and the development of trade with and discovery of foreign countries just to name a few. Tea is everywhere . . . books, movies, rituals, traditions, and now every convenience and grocery store in the U.S. So . . . in considering all that I have said the simple answer to "Why Tea?" must be. . . because "I enjoy tea . . . it tastes good and is good for me."
Warning: The above is the opinion of the author (The Tea And Hat Lady) and is loosely based on scientific fact but strongly based on personal experience, knowledge, and preference.
Here's hoping you are enjoying tea while reading this blog,
The Tea And Hat Lady