Don’t Spill the Tea
Have you ever wondered how the greatest discoveries are made just sitting under a tree? Newton discovered gravity sitting under a tree when an apple fell off the tree.
It is believed that tea was discovered by the mythical Emperor Shennong, inventor of Chinese medicine and of farming. The story goes that one day the emperor was reclining in the leafy shade of a camellia bush when a shiny leaf dropped into his cup of boiled water. Ripples of light green liquor soon began to emerge from the thin, feathery leaf.
Shennong was familiar with the healing properties of plants and could identify as many as seventy poisonous plants in a daylong hike. Convinced that the camellia tisane was not dangerous, he took a sip of it and found that it tasted refreshing: aromatic, slightly bitter, stimulating, and restorative.
Hey, just a minute! Did I just say someone was sitting under tea tree? You may argue that tea plants are bushes which you can stand next to but cannot sit under. The truth is that tea is a tree and can grow up to 45 feet tall. This might be confusing to you if you have seen pictures of tea bushes. But those tea bushes are only kept a bay from growing taller because people prune them that way. If left to their natural state, they’d grow tall and gangly like any other tree.
In fact, if myth is to be believed, the tea trees in some places were very tall and therefore monkeys had to be trained to pluck the precious two leaves and bud.
Yet another legend says that the princess Xi Lingshi discovered that a cocoon could be unravelled to produce a thread when one dropped into her tea while she sat under a mulberry tree. Again, silk was discovered under a tree, that too in a tea cup!
You know how they say money isn’t everything and you cannot eat or drink money? To clarify, tea was used as currency in ancient China. Thus, if you are a tea lover, you could actually claim to be brewing and sipping money.
Do you wish you spoke a foreign language other than English? Well, you could practice saying Ch’a instead of Tea and you would be speaking at least one Chinese word many times a day. The word Chai is an adaptation of the original Chinese word.
In a world where we want to make stronger borders and keep saying ‘No Outsiders Allowed’, it is notable that the Chinese Ch’a was brought to India to serve British Tea and it soon evolved to Indian Chai.
Nothing gives my heart more pleasure than seeing acres and acres of tea bushes. It is true, this medicinal Himalayan Herb works wonders for your physical and medicinal health. Dorje Teas is committed to making Darjeeling Tea Accessible, Available and Affordable to all Indians.
Write to me at Editor@Dorjeteas.com
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