The best cup of tea

After a long day of shoveling show, going to the dentist, shopping for two different kinds of groceries, and picking up library books, I could really use a cup of tea. But first tea had to be brewed, a husband’s offer to brew tea gratefully accepted, purchases put away, a cat let out, and finally a comfy spot prepared so I could enjoy my tea. Then the cat popped up at the window to be let in.Once more I settled into my comfy spot. But just as I reached for my tea, I knocked the whole thing over onto my desk. Not just a little bit and catch the cup and turn it upright, not even drink a little and then knock it over, but the whole cup. A full-sized bath towel’s worth of mopping and sopping, and wiping and griping. I still wanted tea, so while I was cleaning up, I set up another cup to brew.

The second cup didn’t take long, as I unearthed the sedimentary layers of notebooks, unopened installation CDs, file folders, books (but no library books), hair clips, hair cage, hair pins, pens, pocket knife, headphones, ear buds, wallet, cell phone, iTouch, Palm Zire, Oaxacan demon, and miscellaneous receipts and printouts. There’s so much cruft on my desk, the second cup of tea was probably stone cold by the time I got to it, but that was the least of my problems. You see, you really shouldn’t fix tea while you’re distracted. You’d think by the advanced age I have acquired, I would have acquired the ability to brew tea without thinking. Well, I wasn’t thinking, and whatever it is I brewed, it wasn’t tea, but something that  — to coin a phrase — resembled not so much tea, but something that was almost exactly but not quite unlike tea. If I had steeped water from the guppy tank in an unwashed tea kettle, such a decoction would have looked more like tea.

I threw it out, more determined than ever to have some tea. I measured the water, measured the tea leaves, measured the time — it was the third cup so I had to triple measure everything. I would like to claim that it was the best cup of tea ever, but it wasn’t. It was, however, tea. Quite a satisfactory cup of tea. I sipped the whole thing from top to bottom, without spilling a drop.

Besides, after all that aggravation, I could really use a cup of tea.

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