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My world in a tea cup

Cez Tan

Oct 13, 2004

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This light golden brown concoction of a beverage was introduced
to my life early on. My dad had this shrub planted near our kitchen
door. The leaves were small and it bore small red beads of fruits.
He told me it was a lipton tea plant as I patiently picked the red
beads and ate them. In the summer, he would reap the leaves and
dry them under the sun. When they turned brown he would grab a handful
and drop them in boiling water. This would take the place of coffee
on the breakfast table. But being born in a country whose people
were not tea drinkers (except when sick), I felt so poor during
those breakfast mornings with tea on the table.

The rest of the dry brown leaves would be kept until the next
summer. For me, summer fun meant building a makeshift house at
the backyard where me and my friends would play house. I would
often take handfuls of those dry brown leaves and make tea for
all of us. Of couse on the assumption that one of us was sick,
then all the rest would feign sickness just to have a sip.

Then life took a different shape for me. For many years I have
forgotten that uncommon shrub near our kitchen door. We left that
house ages ago and I have moved on to greater leaps in my life.
Tea was never at the forefront of my breakfast table. Until a
few years back.

I met a wonderful world in a tea cup. To make 2-3 cups of tea,
have the water at boiling point. Drop a pinch of the leaves, leave
it boiling for one whole minute. Cut the fire and let steep for
another minute. No more than that! strain the concoction and your
tea is ready. (At least that’s how Jit gave me my first-ever
instructions on how to brew tea). I always take mine as it is,
no milk or sugar.

Now I dont take tea just when I am sick. I take tea as my daily
drink. It’s never too early or too late for tea. It’s an all around
the clock drink, so versatile that you can take it hot or cold,
flavored or just as it is. The best thing about tea is that it’s
the only leaf that gives out an amino acid which is very good
for the heart. It is likewise an anti-oxidant and a hydrating
drink with no calories at all. The list goes on…

Yet, the most special thing that tea ever presented to my life
was opening a new page for me, showing me wonders of how a great
friendship can ever do to us. In life, it is indeed never too
early nor too late for tea. Take a cup now and see a wonderful
new world in a tea cup.

Thank you dear Jit for giving me that cup. I will love you for
always.

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