How to drink Blue Earl Grey tea

Go to Mr. Crepe in Davis Square. Order a big huge cup of Blue Earl Grey for $2 even though you don’t know what it is. You get a small, spherical teapot and a mug. Inside the teapot is a tea basket filled with loose tea leaves, over which they pour hot water. Take the pot over to a table by the window and sit. Read the scrolling headlines at Middlesex Savings Bank across the street as you wait for the tea to steep. After five minutes pour yourself a half a cup, leaving enough water in the pot so it continues steeping. The tea looks weak and smells a little like dish detergent. Maybe it’s the cup. Sit and sip and continue reading the headlines. After another five minutes refill your cup. Now it looks stronger and more tea-like. Look out the window at the students who are so much younger than you walking around the square and the restaurant. Think about your life. Replay every important conversation you have recently had or wish you had had in your head. Feel the tannins in the tea start to make your tongue pucker, and taste the subtle, flowery bergamot flavor. Finish the pot and realize you have nowhere to go. Bring the pot up and have the guy at the counter refill it. After five minutes pour a cup and be amazed that it looks just as dark as the first time. Continue to drink, watch, think. Wait for the scrolling headlines to change. Resolve to get your life back on track tomorrow.


About Don Seiffert

I'm a reporter and writer in the Boston area.
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