Tea Time

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I’ve never been a part of the coffee culture. Oh I tried, I really did. Doesn’t every one else in America belong to that club? But I just couldn’t do it. I can’t stand the taste, no matter how much you tweak it. Whatever you do to it, I can still taste coffee. Put it this way, if I accidentally pop a coffee flavor jelly bean into my mouth, I’d promptly spit it out. See, I really do hate it.

Instead, let me tell you about tea. Now there’s a beverage for me. I love it hot, and I love it iced, it doesn’t matter. It doesn’t even have to be summer for me to enjoy iced tea. To me, it’s a year round drink. And I simply can’t begin my day without a cup of hot tea at breakfast. When I drink hot tea, it must have a generous spoonful of raw sugar, but the iced tea must be plain with lemon optional. It’s the most refreshing of drinks.

Having tea in the morning is not just about quenching my thirst. It’s more like a warming experience. First, I cup the mug with both hands, and just breathe it in. It’s usually too hot to drink anyway, so I can take my time just warming my hands. Then when it finally cools a bit, it’s time to start sipping. Ahhhh. Because tea is sipped instead of gulped, it allows me to start my day in a calm and relaxed manner. Isn’t that the best way to begin?

Now iced tea is more of a refresher, or a thirst quencher. While I’m not sure when I learned to appreciate iced tea, I do remember that my grandmother always had a big glass of it sitting nearby. We would all sneak a sip, and because we were children, we found it bitter. But I just kept trying it, and at some point, I found I loved it too. I’m pretty sure my mom usually served sweet tea, which was a lot easier to love than the plain version. Somewhere along the line, I gave up the sweet tea for the real thing, and I never looked back.

Now I’m an iced tea aficionado. I’m always on the look out for a new version to enjoy. Should I use a few peach tea bags today? Would Earl Grey make a better iced tea? How about raspberry? I’ve also tend to judge restaurants on their ability to make a great glass of iced tea. If they try to serve me a glass of old, stale tea made several days ago, back it goes!

So you can all have your coffee. Jazz it up all you want, it doesn’t make it taste any better. I’ll keep drinking my tea, morning, noon and night, all year round. Give it a try, you might find out how much better it is than your coffee!

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