Saturday, November 5, 2011


I couldn't find my poppy pictures, so I am just showing this Italian church's roof brace.

I've been reading about various Halloween and Day of the Dead celebrations on various tea blogs and thought I would add something about our family's cemetery visits.  We lived in NYS so there was no Spanish or Mexican influences, but as children we cheerfully visited cemeteries for Memorial Day or funerals.   We always visited every single relative or old friend and my great-grandmother or grandmother would tell us kids how they were related, who they were named for, stories of their lives and times so we would remember them.  Many years later, I notice that we, in our turn, are telling our children and grands about Gramma and Grandpa Geores, Aunt Ettie, Gram Turnbull, Uncle Art and all the rest of the clan.  I think this is part of the reason I have never been afraid of death - there are all those loved ones and characters there, waiting for me, with stories to tell.

Now that the downed trees are gone and the tree men with them, the deer are back, all set to once again eat up the birdseed.  They look so sweet and innocent with their big ears and dainty feet, but there is evil in their hearts when it comes to black oil sunflower seed.

I've been back to the eye doctor and have only 1 more week of looking at my toes half the day!  Hooray and hooray!  He is very pleased with its healing and I am pleased to be able to see around the bubble that is holding up my retina.  I had best have a celebratory cup of tea, don't you think?  Being in a remembering mood, I am going to use the poppy china, which I got to remind me of the poppies along the railroads in Italy, as well as their enormous fields of bright red, wild poppies.

I am having the puriTea's Oriental Beauty or Bai Hao Oolong.  My  introduction to this tea, several years ago was so spectacularly good that it has been a favorite ever since.  The dry tea is quite pretty, with leaves touched with silver and gold along the edges and a scattering of gold buds.  It has a slightly sweet, somewhat woodsy scent.  As it brews for 3 minutes with water about 190, it gives off a lemony aroma, almost a tea rose, with the woodsiness.  The brew is a fairly dark yellow brown.  I've not been doing multiple infusions with any teas lately - when you only have a half-hour of upright time, it is too time consuming.  But I will get back to it.

Oh yes, this is a nice tea.  It tastes like lemon-kissed roses with perhaps some rose stem thrown in to ground it,  something in the woodsy end at any rate.  I can imagine this with some Indian dishes, especially their rice pudding or some of the milder curries.  I think it would go well with most tea sandwiches or desserts and probably with Mediterranean dishes as well.  Hmm, I would imagine it would compliment white chocolate, too.  We can't leave out chocolate, can we.

Oriental Beauty is a case for environmentally sound tea culture.  It is a lowly bug which gives it its characteristic taste.  The bugs (a form of leaf hopper) bites the leaves, the leaves produce an enzyme to thwart the bugs and we all benefit from the tea.  Pretty cool, huh?

1 comment:

Steph said...

Thank you for sharing your family's tradition, and I think it's a lovely one! Bai Hao Oolong is my favorite. A perfect tea for celebration.