Mr. Tumnus: “Daughter of Eve from the far land of Spare Oom where eternal summer reigns around the bright city of War Drobe, how would it be if you came and had tea with me?”
“Thank you very much, Mr. Tumnus,” said Lucy. “But I was wondering whether I ought to be getting back.”
“It’s only just around the corner,” said the Faun, “and there’ll be a roaring fire–and toast–and sardines–and cake.”
C. S. Lewis. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Great Britain: (Geoffrey Bles, 1950.) pg. 116.
I think Mr. Tumnus was on to something: tea is best when shared with a friend (or a way to make new friends); tea is always better served like a tea party (although I question his choice of sardine refreshments); and tea no matter what time of the year it is…is tea, and can be fully enjoyed whether on a sunny day or in the winter chill by a roaring fire. (In my opinion, rainy days make great tea days.)
The concept of tea started for me at an early age. We sisters would sometimes have tea parties. My older sister had a tea set and Mom would serve tea (apple juice) with refreshments (usually graham crackers.) Tea time was serious excitement.
Melissa and I
After the apple juice excitement faded, tea was non-existent in my youth–although I applaud my Mom’s efforts in having us try herbal tea. “Add some honey.” Even honey was not sufficient. I never touched tea again until college. Then everything changed. Tea is now a hobby.
Socially, I don’t throw tea parties but I have thought about it a few times. Back at my birthday, being in the south where the best tea resides, my parents gave me a book on tea party history and etiquette. It is fascinating. Books and tea, what could be better?
You don’t necessarily need a tea party to share with friends. Over the past few weeks, I have been given in gracious amounts–tea–resulting in the enjoyment of a few cups during the day. I have been given teas that I have never tried or even heard of in flavor. Once again, excitement resides!–because as far as tea goes, I usually stick with flavors I know or ones that help my stomach (such as peppermint or Bigelow’s Lemon Ginger Plus). But now that new flavors are being given to me as gifts to try, my knowledge of tea choices is expanding and in turn I share the new favorites with my family or other friends.
In order to give, we must also receive.
In life, we have been given a divine invitation…more than just a tea party, the invitation is for eternity, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” ~John 3:16.
The gift has been freely given–freely receive.