Have you ever thought about what a mass of contradictions we humans are? We must strive to better ourselves, but accept ourselves for who we are. Take pride in our accomplishments, but be humble. Work hard, but avoid stress. Eat food good for us, but it must be good tasting. Everything comes with a but. Everything in moderation, but be extravagant sometimes. Protect your children, but let them go. It's no wonder we sometimes fall off this tightrope we call life. When that happens, let's just sit down and have a cup of tea.
And I am having one of this year's specials, which finally arrived through customs - a Pre-QingMing Da Fo (Great Buddha) Long Jing, harvested and hand-pressed on March 10, 2103. It comes to me via Life In Teacup, which always has wonderful green and Oolong teas Gingko has some blacks and pu-erhs as well. I love Long Jing tea, it feels like silk running through your fingers, each leaf or two carefully pressed absolutely flat as tho' you had been ironing and starching them.
They smell like the great green outdoors, with just a hint of toastiness. I am brewing them in a little glass pot, so I can watch them dance about. This is called by some "the agony of the leaves", but I prefer to think of it as a creative dance that yields a lovely drink. It is the soft green of new leaves and smells a bit like fresh asparagus, a common green tea aroma. That indeed is the predominant taste, but quite refined. By the time it gets to the back of my mouth, there are lovely floral tastes, which linger on the palate. This is another of those teas which compels you to keep drinking it because it is so good and you want to see what the next unfolding of flavor is. A lovely experience.
There's a magnolia down by the river that is just about to burst into bloom. They are gorgeous and this year, the weather won't freeze them out before we can enjoy them. I saw some ducks with ducklings yesterday. The little ones were swimming with one parent while the other kept watch. The great blue herons have returned to their rookery and are starting to nest. Soon we'll get to watch them feeding and rearing the young. By the river, the understory of the woods is getting green and the pink haze of the tree buds is moving right into red. Up here, we still are in the early bud stage.
While I was in the garden, I noticed the dandelions are budding. About another week and we'll have yellow flowers scattered across our lawns. I like them, although I know many prefer perfect green lawns. I am with the person who said "If it looks good from 50 feet away, it's good enough". We did have neighbors once who actually vacuumed their lawn. I surely was a sore trial to them.