The Best I’ve Ever Had

21 10 2009

On this side of the pond, the British fascination with a cup of hot tea has always baffled us Yankees as a somewhat quaint, slightly ridiculous and totally unnecessary obsession, akin to driving on the left side of the road or standing in a queue. I belonged firmly in this American camp until recently, when my mother gave me a box full of bagged leaves and insisted it would change my life. Internally, I scoffed at her suggestion, but took the carton nonetheless, confident my opinion was sure.

A tea worth fighting for.

A tea worth fighting for.

A week later, I’m completely dedicated to my daily cup of PG Tips English tea.

I’ve always liked and enjoyed tea but mainly relegated it to cold days or spells of sickness.  In my mind it was one beverage option among many, hardly an integral part of my day. So, I took my mother’s advice, boiled some water and tossed in the bag along with a slice of lemon and prepared myself to not be impressed.

The first sip, and indeed the whole first cup, seemed nothing revolutionary. Enjoyable — sure; a deeper, stronger flavor — definitely; but did it make me want start pronouncing “aluminum” like a fool — not really.

The next day, I came home exhausted from a long shift at my new job and decided to brew up a cup for myself. The effect upon finishing the hot beverage astounded me; I felt rejuvenated, full of pep and vigor but also relaxed, even serene. It was better than a cigarette (and better for you), and I suddenly felt the urge to build an armada, initiate an industrial revolution and colonize a few African nations. I had always wondered how Winston Churchill had become such a bad-ass, now I know he must have drunk nearly as much tea as he did booze.

The dumping of a bunch of tea into the ocean had never really impressed me as revolutionary, but now I understand that refusing to drink such a vital elixir could indeed be interpreted as an act of war.

In fact, I have found this tea so fulfilling that it inspired my first fully formed guitar composition. It’s a simple song, but it captures the essence of my feelings. The words go something like this…

My dark, English tea
It’s my dark, English tea

It’s my favorite kind of tea
It’s the only tea for me

…Now, I never said it was a very clever song (or even any good) but you should keep in mind the fact that I am a terrible guitar player/song writer. I’ve been attempting to achieve some level of mediocrity on the damned six-stringed instrument for the better part of two years now, so the fact that I could finally string together some words and chords, then play and sing them simultaneously (thanks to PG Tips tea) surprised me.

If all this seems a reckless exaggeration,  I would say please withhold your judgment until you have sampled this most pleasant of concoctions yourself. Just don’t forget the slice of lemon.




5 responses

21 10 2009

You have to take it with a little milk and no lemon, lemon is for sweet iced tea.

22 10 2009

Tea, huh? I’m still not convinced…

23 10 2009

You’re absolutely right. I’ve become a convert too.

23 10 2009

Nah, I’ll stick with the totally sedating effects of coffee, thanks. 🙂

25 10 2009
Yo brudda

You have convinced me to try it. I could use something of the sort.

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