Life out of balance. Koyaanisqatsi. I can’t stop thinking about the movie from 1982. (Watch the 5-minute version HERE). My life, this summer, has been so ‘out of balance’. Off balance. Off kilter. Off the rails! This course I teach is all-consuming. It gobbles up every waking thought, and invades my sleep, running through the wires of my brain like a sickness… like a wildfire, leaving trails of burnt up ambition and smoking fields of exhaustion in its wake. I haven’t even blogged about tea for the past 6 weeks! I haven’t even drunk any tea in the past 6 weeks! Life: definitely waaaaaaayyyyyyyy out of balance.
Today. Saturday. Finally, I do not have 16 hours of marking ahead of me. I do not have 6 hours of seminar planning. I do not have any emails to respond to. I do not have any exams to prepare. And it’s a beautiful day, and the sun is shining, and I need to get out of this cage, and I need to collect my spinning mind and tie it back down to Mother Earth. I need to start with tea. Black tea. Clean. Fragrant. Natural. Tea.
This ‘himalayan shangri-la black‘ from M&K’s Tea Co is so tempting with it’s earthy look and feel. The tiny twists of brown, green, and gold have a dark, rich aroma of mincemeat and cloves, with hints of spicy wood. It’s enchanting! This is a 2nd flush FTGFOP1 tea from ‘Shangri-La Tea Garden’, Nepal. Sounds like heaven. Let’s steep!
I steep 1 tsp of tea in my push-button pot for 3 minutes (recommended 2-4 min). The tea is a lovely, clear amber colour. It smells like a sweet, slightly fruity black tea! The first sip is soooooooooooo clean and clear, it makes my mouth water! It’s crisp, and rich, with a clean, oak-y flavour, There is a wee bit of sweet fruitiness, like raisins, but toward the end, there is a wonderful floral perfume that I can’t quite describe. The aftertaste is a light, powdery, floral scent (not a powdery feel, mind you), with a touch of astringency. It’s really really beautiful. Earthy, perfumed, sweet, clean, and beautifully balanced. It’s quite elegant! I love it!
I brewed the second cup for the same time, and it’s obviously lighter in colour. MMM!! This is even more mellow and sweeter than the first! This one has less astringency, and a more musky, earthy flavour, but still with that gorgeous floral undertone! It’s in every way more subtle, and more mellow, but it’s still clean with hints of fruit and perfume. This tea is so elegant, it makes me think of garden parties and high tea with dainty little sandwiches and fine china!
Oops! Almost forgot! I have to mention the inside of the tea package which, like all my M&K’s sample packs, has the mysterious “Lucky Tea Symbol” inside the flap. This time, it’s “The Pizza”, which just makes me laugh out loud. Whatever can that mean? I kind of want someone from M&K’s Tea Co to drop me a line and tell me what these symbols mean… but I kind of don’t! I’m enjoying the mystery and the surprise of it. It’s like a secret code, and if I keep playing, I might unravel the secrets of the universe! So far, I have “The Fox”, “The Sunflower”, and now “The Pizza”. I’m intrigued! I can’t wait to see what’s next!
This tea may have been provided by M&K’s Tea Co, or it might have been one that I bought. I can’t remember which. They sent me a whole heap, and it was so good, I ordered a whole heap more! Now, they’re all mixed up. In any case, I’d like to say a GREAT BIG THANK YOU to M&K’s Tea Co for this beautiful sample! Also, check out their “Lavender Daze” and “California Sweet Peach“!