I love decorating magazines, architecture magazines, and gardening magazines. If I had the extra time, I’d probably spend a lot of it sitting in my own backyard garden – matured like me over the years – familiar and comfortable, drinking tea and looking at pictures of other people’s . . . gardens that is, not tea. Tea is what I’ll drink while doing it.
The kind of tea I choose depends not only on my mood, but on how the garden feels on any given day. On hot days, I might choose a tall tumbler of iced Lavender Earl Grey, brewed gently to let the lavender take center stage, or maybe something citrusy like California lemons, an herbal with essential citrus oils.
On an often misty morning (sea breezes from the Pacific Ocean – an hour away – bring the mist), a hot cup of breakfast-friendly tea like Golden Yunnan, Darjeeling, or Irish Breakfast and a sweater, makes me feel slightly Anglophile. And on cool evenings, that coastal influence is back after a long sunny day, inviting a cinnamon-y choice, like Orange Spice.
This weekend, the yard has been impossible to ignore. It’s not whispering, it’s screaming to me: “Come out here . . . it’s such a waste to stay indoors with this golden sunlight and gentle, warm breeze.” We planted a lot of small trees when we moved in – more than 20 years ago – and now they’re a forest of shady giants, whose limbs enfold me in a visual and psychological embrace. I sip the tea and let the simple things I love enfold and overwhelm my senses.
If I look one way, I’m staring into a montage of greenery with just the slightest peek at my long-time neighbor’s white lattice rose trellis; the other way at my kitchen garden. I like to think about where all this ‘tea stuff’ is going while relaxing out there among my friendly plants and herbs. The mossy old wall fountain trickles; the herbs in the planter Dad built for me give off wafts of mint and rosemary, and the SoCal sun bakes layers of fallen pine needles into a miniature forest of aromatic scent.
Today, I’m feeling torn. I had one vision for the “tea stuff” over a decade ago and it’s morphed – without ever asking for my opinion or permission – into something very different at the present time: technology (and an online business carried over from our retail store days). However, technology – and business in general – feels somehow invasive. I’m just resting my mind, enjoying nature . . . and the teas that got me started in this business.
The only push that brought me in to the computer was this T Ching post. After I finish writing, I’ll need something to take back out there with me. It’s still warm in the Southern California inland this mid-afternoon. I think that Lavender Earl Grey, iced, sounds just about perfect.
Loading and Image 1 courtesy of the author.