There is currently a treat swap going on Ravelry. They are not uncommon among pleasant social sites, but this is my first in a very long while. I was to knit a Christmas Decoration, supply a treat recipe, and spend $10 on a small gift.
The ornament is 90% finished. The recipe will be Magic Cookie Bars. And I reviewed my randomly chosen recipient's profile for ideas for a gift.
She likes tea. Real tea. "Oo, interesting," I thought to myself. (because no one else would actually be interested.)
I dallied around online, ebay mostly, to find an interesting cup or kettle, but nothing fell under the $10 mark. Finally, I googled "tea" or something along those lines and found a few online sites that sell actual tea.
I suppose I could have checked the local grocery, but I had (have) very little faith that what counts as "good" tea would be found near the Lipton and Celestial Seasonings bags.
The longer I looked over what the site (Adagio Teas) the more interested in "real" tea I became. So, I bought a small bit of Moroccan mint tea (because her profile suggested a liking for mint) for the random recipient, plus a steeper and selection of various "real" teas for myself.
The package arrived yesterday. I had my first cup of hot tea (that did not steep through a bag) yesterday afternoon. If you know me even a little, you know there is more than a passing acquaintance with Star Trek in my life. And, really, can any Star Trek fan go to a tea site and NOT buy at least a little Earl Grey? No, the answer is no.
I have a dedicated sweet tooth where my beverages are concerned. Anything that is not water or milk has sugar. And if I am doing the sugaring...it has quite a bit. I tend to make my coffee in the "melted candy bar" range of sugar content. But, I did not want to bury the real flavor of my (more expensive than Lipton) real Earl Grey tea under a mountain of sugar. So, I drank it straight.
The smell was unbelievable! I could have sat there all afternoon just inhaling the vapor from the cup. I have spent many a moment breathing in the glorious smell of a cup of coffee, but this was 1000x better. Sweeter, fresher, more exotic. It smelled like the tea I knew, but was different in a way I cannot put my finger on. And, when it had cooled enough to sip (Captain Picard might drink his hot, but I have no desire for burned lips nor tongue.) the taste was certainly knew and different, while familiar just a bit. I do think I will sweeten it a bit next time, but I will not overdo the sugar.
And once I am thoroughly familiar with the Earl Grey I will move on to the Oolong I bought and compare the two. Then the Darjeeling...
Your picture for today isn't totally random. I posted about a gift, both for a stranger and myself, and give you a picture of my 15 and 14 year old daughters.