The days fly during the busy Advent season. Today, I needed a full tea break to relax and realize that in just eight days it's Christmas!
So, I lit 3 candles and prepared this Cha Xi with a quilt made by my mother and wooden figurines from the Erzbebirge (where my grandmother came from). I brewed my Da Yeh Oolong red tea in an ivory gaiwan and poured it into 3 cups. The first two brews were a little strong with a hint of bitterness. (I should have brewed them shorter to better take into account the recent roasting.). But the following 4 or 5 brews were very smooth and sweet. The flavors kept on going very well during all these brews. The dark honey and fruit scents from these leaves pair well with the Christmas season.
I savor this tea time with the finely carved ornaments. They bring back memories of my childhood Christmas in Europe. Now, they will leave their mark on my children and show them the beauty of traditions and folk art.
After learning about Cha Xi, I rediscover these figurines again. Their function and appearance go hand in hand: they bring beauty and convey a sense of joy for this holiday. But they also give us the freedom to arrange them, to set them up with harmony, like we should do with teaware. I play again, like a child. This is happiness!
The Christmas spirit is in my tea cup, a simple joy as a prelude to a big celebration. Only 8 days to go...
Song of Tasting Tea at West Mountain Temple
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