Tag Archives: Tea

A Back On The Road Moment

Week 19 of T-R-A-V-E-L.

This should do it.

An International Tea Moment now has a Facebook Fan Page! Tell me how you find a decent cup of tea on the road at http://www.facebook.com/TeaMoment.


Filed under Tea, Travel

A Voting Moment

I don’t know if you’ve heard of Trazzler, but it’s a pretty cool travel site that gives brief descriptions of “Travel Moments.” Just my style!

I’ve entered my Mariage Freres Moment in their Reader’s Choice contest, and though a little late to the voting game, I still have 24 hours to get your votes. So, if you’d like to show some tea travel love, click on this link to sign up and cast your vote.



Filed under Tea, Travel

A Quieting of the Mind Tea Moment

I just went to Nordstrom during lunch today to pick up a couple of things and saw a woman get attacked in the parking lot.  I heard a commotion and turned to see a young man in a hooded, black sweatshirt practically jump on her back, trying to grab her purse. At 11:30 a.m. in the morning! She fought him off,  and there were 3 – 4 of us who saw it happen. My heart went out to her. How terrifying!
The thing that impressed me, however, was the number of people who jumped in to assist. One woman who saw it happening started honking her horn and she called 911. Another woman saw him jump into a car with 3 other guys, and she drove around to us to give a description of the car and its passengers. An employee saw where the getaway car had been parked and was able to show security the spot so they could review security camera footage and perhaps get a license plate number. I didn’t know what to do except ask her if she was hurt and follow her around with her shoes that had flown off during the attack. Horrible.
Back at home, feeling the after effects of adrenaline and thinking of that brave woman who fended off her attacker, I felt the need for tea. As fortune would have it, I had just received a package from my dear friends at Naivetea. In addition to a gift I had ordered, there were samples of new delights in the world of Oolong. One struck me as just the thing: Dong Ding Oolong. The name alone made me lighten up, and the earthy, nutty fragrance helped plant my feet firmly back on the ground.
Steeped in my new/old teacup from the Ashland trip, I took in the mellow amber color and inhaled more of that nutty earthiness, reminding me a bit of Genmaicha with that hint of roasted rice. And then, the first sip. It is not often that the flavor of the tea exactly matches the fragrance of the tea, and yet here it was. Such a direct translation! I found it intensely comforting that what I smelled was what I tasted. This is reality. This is comfort. As though I had my own, personal map that was shouting at me in bold letters, “YOU ARE HERE!”
And now I can continue my day, holding that woman in my heart, praying that her raw nerves were being soothed, that the potential fear would release her and she would not spend the next days, weeks and years looking over her shoulder.


Filed under Tea

A Quiet, On-The-Road Moment

The theme of this summer is: Business Travel. From my calculations, I have been in a plane at least once a week since the third week of June. Finding myself in Las Vegas again for an early morning panel discussion, I banished all thoughts of going out for a nice dinner the night before or finally experiencing a performance of Cirque  de Soleil. Instead, I decided it was time to just breathe. I enjoyed a long bath in a giant bathtub. I toyed with the idea of watching the tv that was installed in the bathroom, but then realized that wouldn’t help me achieve my goal of doing absolutely nothing.

 Having succeeded in that pursuit, I then lounged in the white bathrobe provided by the Wynn Resort, and read magazines and occasionally experimented with the remote controlled sheers and curtains that covered the wall-o’-window that made up a good portion of my room’s structure – all from the comfort of my bed.

I haven’t been sleeping well on the road, which is unusual. I chalk it up to being a mommy now, always wondering what my Edie is doing at that exact moment, does she miss me, did I remember to do enough of her laundry (as though Gene has never been introduced to a washing machine before).

Oh, the thoughts that run through my mind. “We probably need more eggs at home. I wonder if Edie still likes yogurt. Why is she so terrified of public potties? That lady in the airport bathroom yesterday looked like she had a little too much fun in Vegas. How many times have I been in Vegas this year? Why can’t you get from Orange County to Las Vegas before  9 a.m.? I used to be able to sleep in until way after 9 a.m. What was the name of my high school teacher who used to fall asleep in the classroom? An English teacher. Mrs. Reed. Though, if her name had been Mrs. Read, it would have been funnier. Or was it Reid? Or Ried?” And so, as the sun rises on Sin City, I pull my thoughts together and do the 2 things that I know will get me in the proper frame of mind for my upcoming presentation: I play with the remote controlled sheers and curtains some more.

And I order a pot of tea.

Ah… Harney and Sons English Breakfast. Well served.


Filed under Tea, Travel

A Hamburg – Shanghai Milk Oolong Moment

One of my greatest joys is when someone shares their own international tea moment, and when I received this one, it was especially lovely. Abadia has been a long-time reader and provides some of the greatest tips when I’m on the lookout for something in particular. So, please enjoy this tea moment, provided by Abadia and her daughters, Sara (13), Maren (10) and Isabel (8). All photos are courtesy of Sara (well done!)

Dear Jen,

I found it! Milk Oolong!
And it’s wonderful!

I was in Hamburg with my girls and we visited a tea house, Shanghai Yu Garden, that’s a replica of a famous tea house in Shanghai. This house is also a cultural centre and a bridge between both cities (Hambug and Shanghai). 
The tea house has a website, but unfortunately not in English. www.yugarden.de

We had there “Yum Cha”, that’s the chinese tea time, and they served us incredible “Dim Sum” with the tea.

I tasted their Milk Oolong.

The nice woman (all the employees come from Shanghai) gave me a little bag with some Milk Oolong, and I’m wating for a special moment to drink it.

Next time I will try their the “Dragonwell”!

Greetings from hot (really hot) Germany!


To Visit:

Shanghai Yu Garden
“Hamburg-Shanghai Europa Tourismuszentrum”
Feldbrunnenstraße 67
20148 Hamburg

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An Imperial Beauty Moment

I am the mother of a 2-year old girl.

She is changing so fast, now. Jumping, running, talking, sleeping in a big girl bed! I guess every parent marvels at the very fact of their child. I certainly do. Every new facial expression is so clever, every new word a sure sign of genius. And as she changes, so do I. The fierce, desperate anxiety to keep her safe and alive at all costs, is mellowing slightly to a fierce protectiveness to ensure she gets what I believe is best for her and that nobody messes with her. Nobody.

She has her nicknames, like any child. And like many parents, we can’t help but refer to our little girl as our “Princess.” And it is during this moment of reflection and quiet gratitude that I, appropriately, am enjoying a most elegant and regal oolong.

Imperial Beauty. The honey-caramel tones of its liquid are re-emphasized by the light honey-caramel aroma.  A pleasantly sweet candy and floral fragrance – but not too sweet.  The first sip is rewarded with a more rich and substantial oolong that really does feel like an Imperial luxury.

I’m noticing that oolongs, and in particular, Naivetea oolongs, are becoming my companions in moments of relaxation, reflection, and peaceful solitude. Is it the touch of floral fragrance that puts me in mind of a peaceful garden? The satisfying yet mild taste and substance that makes its presence known but is not imposing?  I think Lawrence Lai, of Naivetea, put it best when he explained that oolongs are such a “friendly tea.”

As I finish this lovely cup and count my blessings, I smile at the thought that this mother of a little “Princess” can’t wait to share moments of Imperial Beauty together. And soon.


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A Saturday Tea and Sushi Moment

Saturday mornings have turned into my private getaway day. Gene takes on Edie, and I escape for a couple of hours to do any exotic thing I desire. This has typically meant that I sneak away to the library to check out 3 books, and then sit in the attached coffee house, The Neighborhood Cup, for a cup of tea or coffee and a bit of reading.

These days, however, I have had a strong hankering for sushi. The reason? I can’t explain. I’m originally from the Northwest United States. Sushi in that region is considered g-r-o-s-s amongst the majority of the population. But since our move to California 10 years ago and an abrupt introduction to it during one of my first annual review meetings with my boss (in which I was desperately trying to act mature and sophisticated), I have come to enjoy and even crave it.

So, on my Saturday mornings, I have become a regular at Kan Pai sushi. They bring me my beverage without even having to ask. They know I will always order a crunchy roll and a tuna or salmon roll. The waitress, who I suspect is also one of the owners, made the observation, “You’re always reading.” Yes. Yes, I am. I am escaping into someone else’s world, just for an hour or so, re-energizing so I can dive into the new week. And keeping me and my book company is always their pot of tea. A bagged oolong, it doesn’t matter really. Because a tea moment can often be about the moment itself. What is happening there, what is being discovered or soothed or mulled over. The quality of tea can be something special. But on these Saturday sushi and tea moments, the point of it all is to just be.


Filed under Tea