Actually, it would be inappropriate to start this without one.
Could you hold on just a minute while I stick the kettle on?
Aaahhh, that’s better, thanks for waiting – it would have seemed wrong to write an article praising tea without a cup of the stuff by my keyboard.
How do you take yours? With milk or without? With sugar or sweetener, just black, strong or weak? Me, I like a medium brew with a good amount of milk. I prefer it not too stewed, but with more depth than the tasteless, anaemic stuff my parents insist on drinking. Dirty water, my gran calls their tea.
My gran, now there’s a person who knows how to make a good cup of tea. It was in her house that I developed my love for a cuppa. We used to go there, my sister and I, every Saturday afternoon when we were little.
On each visit we would be supplied with a choice of chocolate biscuits (normally Blue Riband or Penguin) from the box and a cup of tea. Coffee was never really an option, although you could have a lemonade if she had any in the fridge.
Inevitably though I had a cup of tea. At first with one sugar and then later, as I got older, without. The thought of drinking sugary tea now turns my stomach.
That Saturday afternoon tea ritual soon turned into a daily brew. While other teenagers were craving fizzy drinks from metal cans, all I wanted was a warm mug of tea. What can I say, I wasn’t hugely cool.
As an adult my tea love has only intensified. I drink at least two cups every day. For evenings I’ve even found a delicious decaffeinated blend. But what I like most is a decent mug of builders’ tea in the afternoon, just like my gran would make.
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