Drinking Tea


Writing group today was very interesting in that we were given a list, randomly comprised I’m told, and told to pick a subject and write for 15 mins. The top one in the list was Drinking Tea, and for me, as may become apparent, it was a no brainer, really. Here is my effort. I hope you enjoy it.

Drinking Tea Sept 2012

Drinking tea means a lot to me. It always has. I love coffee, I REALLY, REALLY love coffee but I always start the day with a brew. My Dad was such a famous tea drinker, known throughout the family as far as distant cousins and his reputation was entirely justified, I can confirm. To witness his intake was a sight to behold. He was so “into” his tea that the only logical vessel I could think of to transport his ashes back home after he died (obviously, it would be a little cruel otherwise) was his ancient, blue Tetley’s Tea tin.
To this day he lives in it in my bedroom wardrobe. In an attempt to start a tradition I have my own tea tin picked out and in daily use, gathering the bumps and knocks and memories like those that are invoked in me when I open my wardrobe and see my Dad, in his tin. Dads tin has wear where he used to pick it up in the shape of his hand. Nobody else can see it but I know it’s there.

It was the first thing he reached for in times of crisis, times of joy or just time for a brew. I often wondered how he could taste any tea, the amount of sugar he piled in was astonishing, but all of his workmates and friends did the same so I must assume its cultural and of their time. I suppose there is a kind of comfort in sweetness – like condensed milk sandwiches or dipping a child’s dummy in syrup. No major decision was ever made further than three feet from Dads tea tin. Dad himself was never too far away from it and he baulked at his sister’s fancy Lapsang Souchong or Earl Grey readily on offer just five houses away. She never complained about his tea though and she heartily supported my decision to decant him from the horrible plastic urn issued by the crematorium. Another decision that was made not three feet from Dads tea tin.

As you can see from the picture below, he seems fairly well settled in there and he can still wear his old cap as well.



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