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Two for Tea and Tea for Two

I've had a fairly long love affair with tea. I think it may have reached the same length of time as my love affair with coffee. But I had to part with the black stuff long ago. My nose says yes but my stomach says no.

My love of tea great exponentially when I moved to the UK. I mean, come on people, in the Western world, they are THE QUEEN of tea. Just ask their Queen. I know she's having tea all the time.

When I moved to Asia, it became greater on a whole other level. I mean, I had read about the benefits of green tea - that it can help reduce your risk of cancer by 70%!!!! - and had dabbled a little bit in the green stuff before I arrived.

But South Korea had green tea by the plentiful. Hot green tea. Cold green tea. Instant green tea. It became my companion at work, at home and more importantly, in the sauna. While I sweat out all the junk I was consuming, the green tea was there with me, offering a refreshing coolness as well as a detoxifyer. The relationship just kept growing stronger.

So, can you imagine, when we were in China, when I discovered they do green tea on a WHOLE NEW LEVEL??

While visiting the picturesque Hangzhou, I discovered that it was also home to China's Tea Museum.



HangZhou is famous for the production of the well known Longjing, see in my picture above.

And this place was not just a stuffy old building with exhibits. They actually housed a school, and about 10 different tea rooms. But the best part? The tea plantations.




I was on my own, but in my element. It was like visiting your favorite winery.



I learned some valuable lessons about tea when I was there, specifically that there is a special way to boil the water and brew your tea.

You're not meant to "burn the water" by over boiling it, just bring it to a nice small bubbles boil.

You're meant to fill the glass 20% full and leave for 30 seconds to stew. Then you fill up the rest of the glass up to 70%. The 30% that's missing? Well, that's where you store all the love and care you've put into making this tea for your guest. Or yourself.

I make tea now numerous times a day. And I can't seem to make it the old way anymore. But every time I make some tea, it brings me back to my day in the fields.

Keeps me travelling every day, that tea does.

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