Wednesday, August 14, 2013

A Dueling Dragon Well Moment

This summer feels like it has been a series of decisions of every size and magnitude. From "zucchini or broccoli with dinner?" (broccoli) to "this online meeting provider or that one?" (this one) to "are you going to try for a boy now?" (no).  It's daily and weekly and monthly, decisions, decisions, decisions. And it seems more so now than ever. I don't know what's in the air.

Most of them have some kind of long-term ramification. I've been wishing I could just make a decision that had no ramifications whatsoever.

And then the opportunity arrived by mail from JING Tea. Airmail, even. The decision: which Dragon Well do you like better?

A sheer opinion that most likely will be different than (and the same as) at least half of the people who are faced with the same decision. I like the sound of that.

What a pleasure to set aside the weight of the day, put the kettle on, lay out two cups, and enjoy the company of myself and two cups of tea.

I've been loitering in a particular daydream of late that involves wandering aimlessly through fields of tea in the early morning while the leaves are fresh with dew or mist. I take great pleasure in reading about the origins of the teas I'm drinking and imagining myself there. These teas fan the flames of my fantasy.

In this cup, JING Tea's Dragon Well Supreme, Organic.
Picked in the cool early spring, before the rains. From the organic soils of Fengwu Tea Garden.
 As this tea steeps, there is a light, earthy, lemon freshness from the pale yellow liquid. Early spring seems like yesterday and yet a million years ago both at the same time. The first sip of Supreme is springtime in a cup. Light, fresh, smooth, smooth, smooth. I can slow down, I can let the weight of months of decisions slip off of my shoulders.


In this cup, JING Tea's Organic Dragon Well.
Picked between April 11th and 12th 2013 from Yanghai Garden
 The scent here is more earthy, with a hint of toasted rice. As I enjoy the first sip, I am reminded of genmaicha, though very subtly. This is a tea of the earth, and I find it fascinating that teas picked just days apart (though different gardens) can taste so different and yet be so obviously Dragon Well.


I take my time, I savor each tea, appreciating the complexities and changes within each tea as the minutes pass. In the end, I steep one more cup n the beautiful, clear, glass tea infuser mug JING Tea provided as well.

 
 
Watching the leaves steep is almost as relaxing as sipping the tea itself.
 
I decide, with no consequence whatsoever, that there's a reason the first tea is named, "Supreme." For that is what it is. And I don't feel at all badly for the second Dragon Well, because I'll be enjoying it again too. The other lovely fact of my decision is that for once it is not an all-or-nothing proposition. I can decide which one I like better, but I can have my Teas and drink them... two.