; Cwyn's Death By Tea: The Jet Set ;

Thursday, May 7, 2015

The Jet Set

Finally my tea buying vacation is here, and I'm just arriving in China. This is the ideal vacation for me, because quite honestly I'm fed up with buying dirty tongs on EBay and you know my problems lately with vendors. Since nobody is happy anymore the only solution is I must go pick the tea myself. Naturally I've planned my entire trip in advance, starting with the selection of the tea farm where I plan to get my very own personal 2015 tongs.

An ideal tea farm needs to be tended by a single family or preferably a monastery where the monks never think about sex and especially not with each other. They should have sweet, gentle and deferential voices. Monks should eat nothing at all or tsampa if they simply must eat. And of course they take visitors all day long and pose for photos when asked. The tea farm must be at a 2000 foot elevation and preferably higher. I'd like to ask that my private room have an attached en suite with double sinks, and please inspect the drainage before I get there.

Hopefully you'll have a nice tray ready for me when I arrive, this trip is exhausting to say the least. And I hadn't planned that stopover at the World Tea Expo in Long Beach, but I simply had to put in an appearance because I'm a Tea Writer and naturally everyone expects to see me there. Also I had a hair appointment with Wen in LA too but that just made skipping the World Tea Expo inexcusable. So I'm far more tired than I anticipated and the tea was horrible on the flight. You'd think an Asian airline would have decent tea, and unfortunately I had to ship all my gift bags from the Expo back home. Actually my husband's secretary is arranging it, and he is usually dependable, but this is the reason my flight has literally worn me out.

The trees must be at least 100 years old, 500 okay and if I get my way at least 1000 years old. The monks and families tell me the leaves are fine if they are bug bit, but you know what? I want mine perfect, sorry. I'm traveling a long way to get this tea and I expect a lot for my trouble. My tea needs to be gushu, nothing else, and I want to know if it rained before the tea was picked. All my tea must perfect for aging, which means it must be bitter and full-bodied without any off tastes. The leaves need to be thickly veined and as long as my hand. I will be checking to make sure. Tea producers screw up the wok process all the time and you can be certain not a single charred twig will make into any of my beengcha.

All tea must be gluten-free. This is a really important criteria. I never let any gluten whatsoever within 20 feet of my children and at least 500 feet of my house because of what it does to the bowels. And I know for a fact that gluten can produce spores that fly around in the air and affect my son's lungs. Same thing with peanuts. Now I'm aware that most tea farms don't grow peanuts but I should tell you that one can find traces of peanuts in nearly everything these days. I just went through this on the plane trip over here and I'm not in the mood to go through it all again. Are we good so far?

So my goal is to make 20 tongs of the best gushu you have. Actually we could save some time if you have most or all of the tea picked before I get there. I've taken the time to get my rubber stamps made with my own design and to choose the ink that best represents who I am as a person. I'm really looking forward to just sitting down and stamping my tea wrappers while I watch the monks making my tea cakes. Also, I normally drink Imperial Bud hongcha in the morning so I'd be happy to sip on that while I do my rubber stamping. Eventually I'll be in the mood to sip some of your vault tea, the older stuff, twenty years old at the very minimum. I won't be paying for any of that so don't worry. Trying this older tea will give me a chance to see how it all ages before I buy any of the newer tea.

Another thing. It really gets on my tits when I buy a tong and the bamboo is all brown and knotty and gnarly-looking with split pieces. I have returned many a tong for this reason alone. My idea is you should sun-bleach the bamboo so it is a nice creamy ivory color, this would look awesome in my living room curio cabinet where I plan to display all this new tea. When my daughter has her first grade graduation party in June I'm hoping everyone will get a chance to see the display, since I've been talking it up for months now. I am very particular about brown spots which are bad Feng Shui according to my decorator. I paid her a fortune to arrange my house and pick the paint color last year and I'm told she is booked solid now through next year which is really inconvenient when I'm extremely busy trying to plan a party. So if you can inspect all the bamboo in advance this will help compensate for the misfortune my daughter has experienced so far this year.

You asked my husband's opinion and he wants me to let you know that he isn't fussy about the tea. That's because he's leaving all this to me. However, he is very particular about the cost. As I wrote to you previously, we will be paying $10 per cake.

If anything in this text message is unclear, you can fax the Delta Club at the airport.

Sent from my iWatch.


  1. Oh, that gave me quite the laugh, woke up my sleeping boyfriend, or maybe the gluten spores did, since they also cause insomnia.

  2. Hi
    Welcome to China
    I have a lovely tea garden on top the highest peak in Yunnan, where the trees are all at least 1,000 years old and have never seen any fertiliser other than that passed by a rare species of golden fruit bat. They are watered by eternal mists so fine nooner who lives there ever ages. Unfortunately I can't invite you there as it is tended my monks so pure they are never allowed to come into contact with any thing even remotely female. They are even only allowed to eat eggs laid by cockerels.
    However, I do have a small sample of our wonderful tea I can show you. Although as you will see from the wrapper it was only picked last year it has almost magical ageing properties and already looks and tastes like a 2005 tea. Imagine how good it will be in in another five years. I will open one for you to try. Sadly I can't open them all for you as this would cause them to age even faster, so that they would be past their best too soon. However, I will help you by packing them and taking them to the post office myself, I will even pay the shipping.
    I can do this for the all inclusive price of just $199.99 for 20 if you give me your banking details, so that I can arrange an electronic transfer - so much easier for you
    Please reply, with a photograph. Take no notice of rumours that my name is Prince Odioku. It is Triad Chang

    1. A Prince, eh? What else you got to show me?