Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Tea Taster Woes

Lake Thun, by Schloss Spiez.

Phoo and double phoo! I finally really tasted the water here and it's not very good. So I was on the lookout for a water filter to go on the faucet. I saw one on sale, cheap, that uses the same filter pack as my old one. Great, now I'm really in business! Until I tried to put the thing on. Easy directions, easy to do, BUT... It doesn't work and after getting thoroughly soaked twice and mildly sprayed 3 times I bunged it back in the package, to be returned. There is a reason it was cheap, I should've known.

No tea today other than the Chinese restaurant tea, which is only so-so. I don't understand how a restaurant can care about its food but not its tea, especially since tea is so very Chinese.

I was thinking some more about the whole issue of organic vs. non-organic and the earth. We lived for several years in southern York County, PA, which has some of the best farm land in the country. One old farmer there had us look at the difference in height between the edges of fields and the fields them selves – often as much as 3 feet. He said a lot of that had happened in his lifetime, as the earth lost its tilth due to greedy farm practices which took too much out of the soil without putting enough back in. He credited this to lack of crop rotation, overuse of fertilizers and pesticides, all of which threw off the natural rhythm of the earth. He said he was guilty too, as he mostly raised hogs and potatoes for potato chips, which meant just one kind of potato.


Alex Zorach said...

This is close to home for me! I grew up in Lancaster County, one county over from York county. This area does really have some of the best farmland anywhere in the world...the soil is so rich!

There are a lot of unsustainable practices though...the one that I see most that troubles me is the complete lack of riparian buffers along the side of streams. A lot of the streams that run through farmland have bare soil or at most, just grass, running right up to the edge of the water. As a result, huge amounts of soil
are lost to erosion.

This is a twofold tragedy as the soil, a valuable resource, is lost, and the nutrients in it which would be beneficial for agriculture, become a curse and a pollutant as they flow downstream into large waterways...the Chesapeake bay has been devastated by nutrient pollution, not to mention a number of the rivers and smaller streams and tributaries that eventually flow into it.

marlena said...

In England, which is known for its hedges, a while back, they were cutting the hedges for bigger fields, but discovered thatthey were losing wildlife, soil, etc, etc. and have started replanting big hedges.