Tea: English Lesson 4

This post will be short and simple. The English love tea. I don’t have much else to say about it, but I can’t glaze over that important and deeply ingrained tradition as I reflect on my English lessons. For a while, I insisted the English love for tea was a direct parallel to the United States’ love for coffee. It’s not.

And as an outsider, the tea culture remains difficult to grasp. Some key points about tea I picked up on: It’s comforting. It’s social. It’s ritualistic. Some ways of drinking it are slightly more acceptable than others, but as long as you drink it, you’re safe. I met a girl in Oxford who said she doesn’t trust an English person that doesn’t like tea. I’m not sure I would either, after wtinessing its central role in their daily lives. I might question their Englishness a bit… Also, what we would specify as “English Breakfast” is “tea” there, no need for specification unless you want something fruity or green or Earl Grey. Tea is what you drink in England. The end.

Although England did not turn me from my coffee-obsessed ways, it did inspire me to purchase this beauty when I moved back last fall. It’s called a kettle. And, no, I didn’t know that before I moved to Oxford.

No Comments

  1. Jennifer on May 27, 2010 at 9:33 am

    Oh, just seeing this post makes my heart happy. Now I want some. Thanks for the reminder.

    • Amanda on May 27, 2010 at 8:29 pm

      Aussies are as bad as the English when it comes to tea. When we visited the states a few years ago we saw that there was this huge isle for coffee but you’d need a magnifying glass to find the tea! its about half/half here because we drink coffee too, maybe not quite as much as Americans though. England had a lot of influences on us being our ‘motherland’ not so long ago (only 200-ish years ago).

      • andrealucado on May 27, 2010 at 8:40 pm

        Thanks for stopping by, Amanda! Australia is in my top-10 places to visit next!! Yes, coffee is aplenty in this land, and I definitely had enough of it in England but I was so disappointed to find out “half-n-half” doesn’t exist there. I found some very interesting ways to substitute it though…

  2. Harry on May 28, 2010 at 9:48 am

    I love tea…. I feel like drinking tea already

  3. katieleigh on May 28, 2010 at 4:45 pm

    I love tea, too…that’s one aspect of Englishness I will never give up!

  4. jenna on June 3, 2010 at 10:07 am

    ha! i love that your kettle sits right next to your Starbucks grounds. you’re right. you are still a coffee-drinking American. so glad i can proudly say i have converted. tea for me please!

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