My greatest achievement thus far, if you were to ask me, would be the formation of theHood River Valley High SchoolTea Club. The origins of the club are shrouded in mist, obscured by great clouds, and blocked out by the unknown, but essentially boil down to my English teacher’s Tea Tuesday ritual.  She would brew fine green tea for her students every Tuesday. I would often help as part of the “tea crew.”

I found it very satisfying, both the ritual of brewing and the tea itself. I thought maybe other people – those not enrolled in one of her classes – might also find it such. So, with “Rafe’s blessing,” I started a Facebook group. It was a group designed to bring together a diverse group of tea lovers into a single room for the sole purpose of drinking tea. This cathartic event was the blazing furnace that forged the first part of the HRVHS Tea Club.

3489002528_a07860c97c_zThe Facebook group was quite successful. We recruited a terrifying group of more than 100 members. Only about 25 showed up, but this was enough to fill the room and overwhelm the Zojirushi.  After some three meetings, however, we had about three members. The club’s year did not end with a bang so much as a splash. At the last meeting, an incident occurred with a beach ball and a flower vase. The jury is out on the culprit – Tea Club or passersby – but what happened to the industrial carpet in the classroom is unspeakable.

2013 – 2014 was a much more productive year for the club. This was the year Tea Club became a school-recognized club. It was not easy. The Associated Student Body required a charter, an advisor, and a significant application process. I waded through the dead trees, cutting a swath with my ink machete. I gathered my forces, and named the leadership organization of the future tea club. We appointed a president and a vice president, as is standard. We got creative after that, and appointed a Treasure-Bearer filling the position of treasurer. I was pushed to the front, as Grand Emperor. Holding what was technically the top position, I was ready to lead a great group of people toward a great year.

To be continued.

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