22 February 2012
Chai,the elixir to relax ? Perhaps, that is one of the reason it is one of the highest selling beverage. Boiling Tea leaves is the most easiest drink to make and the most common part of making tea irrespective of the culture.
How long water is boiled, When should the tea leaf be put,in what kind of pot is the tea boiled, How is it presented, what else the tea is mixed with -(sugar, milk, cream), At what time of the day or night should it be taken, How many cups of tea can one drink is what makes it different from Turkey to India and from China to Canada.Nevertheless Tea is a unifier to bring oneself to relax and and enjoy the comfort and company of friends.
I was pleasantly surprised when a Turkish friend invited me to Turkish Tea, since I was naive of its existence. People from different countries were present - Americans, Egyptians, Cubans, Chinese, Polish , French, Indians and the large population of Turkish origin or Natives, because it was held at the Turkish Center. It was considered only polite to drink at least 3 cups of tea.
Tea was passed around in chai barads. It was black and I had mine without Sugar. Two cups were good enough for me, after a sumptuous serving of Turkish snacks, all made at home by Native Turkish women. But the best of all was the company of our friends for 3 hours. The discussion moved from Tea Party politics, to paintings (one of them was a painter who was currently working on an exhibition ) to food of the ancient culture of our countries.
There were many things in common among everybody - a love for true earthy things , without being polluted by the cosmopolitanism of the fusion foods that we see around everywhere these days and our roots. Each of our roots had similarities,yet different,especially in the value and concept of time. That is what has bought us together - something we did not get in our countries and the curiosity to explore and experience new things. I will be back with a cup of tea again !
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