Sunday 14 February 2010

Global Communitea

Patterdale TerrierIt was a cold and miserable day in London last Monday (no big surprises there - it is February) so walking Jimmy, my beloved terrier, was a little bit more of an effort than usual. It's not helped by the fact that as he gets older - he's around 16 - he gets more reluctant to go out in the rain himself. Anyway, on arriving home, damp and ever-so-slightly gloomy, I discovered a parcel left by the postman. It had come from Australia so I knew it had to be the tea that The Likkle Girl who Wurves Pwetty Things had promised to send me. But I was expecting a few tea bags and this was a not inconsiderable parcel. What could be inside?

Present tea parcelFirstly, I discovered a card, and then a parcel wrapped simply and beautifully. And inside that parcel was a selection of three different teas: the Japanese green tea that she had told me was her favourite; a zip-lock bag full of Chrysanthemum tea - something I love but have never seen in London; and a gorgeous little tin full of pouches of Oolong. The Oolong pouches are such a clever idea: each one contains enough for a serving which can, of course, be infused a number of times. As I was heading over to Berlin a couple of days later, and was busy until then, I didn't get a chance to try anything except the green tea. We had had a discussion about how much of a tea-snob I was as Likkle Girl was concerned I wouldn't like the tea as it came in a teabag. And although I must admit I never buy bags myself anymore she needn't have worried: the green tea was lovely. A classic Sencha style tea with a fruity, grassy flavour, it reminded me that good tea is good tea, whatever receptacle it comes in.

Chrysanthemum green teaOne of the nicest things about all of this, aside from receiving lovely gifts in the post from the other side of the world, is the knowledge that I have made another new friend in the blogosphere. When people talk about the internet causing the break-down of communities and social isolation I have to say that my experience since I began writing this blog has been the complete opposite. I have met some lovely people, both virtually and in person and have found a community of like-minded people who care about cycling, good food, design and, of course, tea. They may not all be near enough for me to meet up with them on a regular basis, but I like to think that if my travels take me to some of the places where my new friends live we'd get together for a pot of tea and perhaps a slice of cake. And if that's not something positive, I don't know what is.


  1. That all looks so lovely- and you are right about blogging. I've not written on my blog for a little while now for a long list of not-very-good reasons, but I'm now feeling quite inspired to do so again!
    Glad to come across a fellow cyclist and cake fan!

  2. Jimmy is so sweet! So pleased you got a nice parcel in the post from my homeland ;0)

  3. Hello Natalie,
    Ooooh! Tea in exchange for a photo of cute Jimmy! YAY! I didn't know you had a dog. I love dogs! Please feature him more on your blog?

    Glad you liked the green tea! Phew! Haha.

    And you've put the meeting-bloggy-pals thing in words so nicely! I think I've met more nice people via blogging in the last few years than in real life. xx

  4. Some days ago I received a little package full of tea samples from a nice person I've only met virtually.
    The package came from California (USA) and.... I live in Germany!!!

  5. I absolutely agree with you about the internet being a great way to meet like minded people. Since I got into Twitter and blogging last summer I've met about 20 people in real life and every single one of them I got on with like an old friend. I always think that it's the modern day equivalent of pen friends and noone ever rubbished those.

    An American blogger posted me a bag of peanut M&Ms last week. So exciting!

  6. Eeek! Jimmy looks like Dougal's older cousin... too cute.