Friday, November 19, 2010

Dried leaves in boiling water...

...an exercise in associative blogging.

Tea.

My Nanna (Dad's mum), who I remember as teaching me to drink tea - no sugar, a bit of milk, strong and hot.

Breathing in the steam from the mug, cupped in cold hands, sitting around a campfire at night. So many glorious camping holidays with my family and my mum's twin sister's family when I was a kid.

Yum cha, the brew getting stronger as the meal progresses until the pot is refilled and it goes back to hot water lightly tinged with colour and flavour.

The ritual of Grandma's teapot, readied before every meal and filled with boiling water as dessert was finished, the cosy tucked around it, and cups of tea poured when perfectly brewed.

The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy and the cup of something that was almost but not quite entirely unlike tea which was all poor Arthur could get out of the Nutrimatic drinks dispenser.

Cold tea being used as a burns treatment in one of the Sue Barton books.

The Swallows and Amazons were always drinking tea; Lucy had tea with Tumnus the faun; Bilbo drank tea with Gandalf; the Mad Hatter had a tea party; Bunyip Bluegum, Sam Sawnoff and Bill Barnacle brewed tea in a billy to have with the puddin'; and there's nothing better than sitting down with a nice hot cup of tea and a good book.

Standing at the bus stop waiting to go to school in the morning with my cup of tea, the bus stop was right by our letterbox, when I finished my tea I'd put the empty mug in the letterbox and retrieve it when I got home in the afternoon. I once dropped and broke a favourite mug (given to me by my best friend Rowena) juggling too many belongings while trying to open the front door.

Tom reaching for my mug of hot tea from his perch on my left hip at maybe 9 or 10 months old and demanding his share of it before it got cold. Asbestos mouth that child.

Sitting on our front deck with my gardener, drinking tea and listening to tales of him growing up on a farm in South Africa and becoming a cheesemaker and eventually emigrating to Australia. He's moved up to the Central Coast now and has passed the Sydney part of his business on to his son. They're both lovely people but the son sends minions rather than coming himself (he's also living on the Central Coast) and I'm not at home as much so the tea break with the gardeners isn't happening any more.

Comfort, the cure for all ills. Peppermint tea for morning sickness (or rather morningnoonandnight sickness as it was), chamomile for sleep, English Breakfast tea for fueling up for the day, Earl Grey tea at night.

Watching Star Trek with Adam and wrangling cups of tea from each other with humerous orders "Tea, Earl Grey, hot. Make it so?"

Smoko at the shearing sheds when I went on a Scripture Union Agriculture camp during school holidays in year 7. It's called a smoko but it's really all about the mugs of tea. And the enormous trays of slab cake. I rode a pony bareback (and fell off) and drove a car across a paddock on that camp too. Then sprained my ankle so badly I couldn't walk for several days because I tried to chase sheep over rough ground wearing gum boots. My friend Rowena carried me piggy-back from the paddock back to where the camp staff were.

My kids bringing me cups of tea when they see I'm stressed or upset. On Wednesday night after Caitlin's dance concert this week I was so exhausted and strung out that when we got home I collapsed on the lounge and cried a little. Next thing I knew I had two cups of tea, both Caitlin and David had independently made one for me. I drank them both.

Drinking tea with my Mum and my brother on Saturday night. We sat at the kitchen table at my Mum's place after having left Grandma's room at the nursing home. We talked and cried a little and remembered and smiled and even laughed a little.

Tea.

Dried leaves in boiling water.


50 Things post No.18

This isn't quite a usual Friday Fragments style of post, not least because it doesn't just cover the last week - more like the last 40 years - but it's certainly fragmentary and it does include a couple of bits from the week just gone, so I'm linking up anyway. Don't forget to visit all the other fabulous fragmenters too!

Mommy's Idea
Hosted by Mrs4444.


8 comments:

Deborah said...

Tears in my eyes, Mim. And a smile on my lips.

Leatherworking Reverend said...

Mmm, tea. :-)

Ariane said...

Tea and sympathy, a much more powerful prescription than many give it credit for.

Great post.

Nicole said...

This is just wonderful :)

Cathy said...

Great post Mim. I wish I could pop over for a cuppa with you right now...

Unknown Mami said...

You make me feel like such a jerk because I don't drink tea. I just never developed the habit, but you make it sounds so friggin' wonderful.

Kirby3131 said...

My dearest friend drinks tea. I always think of her when I see tea or watch someone drink it. I like how that happens.

I love that you put your mug in the post box. That is a great visual, but so sad you broke your favorite mug.

I think post was perfect for a FF post. I enjoyed the whole thing from top to bottom - oh and I love all of the pottery in the photo. That's what really makes my heart melt...beautiful pottery.

Kristin _ The Goat

Sleepydumpling said...

I never used to drink tea of any form. I have been a coffee girl since my teens. But in my mid-20's, I started drinking green tea at Yum Cha, and that has opened up a world of tea drinking possibilities for me.

However I still don't drink regular old "black" tea. I can't even abide by the smell of it. I'm not fussed on white tea either. But I do love the green stuff.