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A Time Capsule
Here in Wenshan, Mr. Lee, our Baochong farmer, keeps bees and collects the tea seeds to crush for oil. The bees will harvest the pollen from the tea flowers and they will be particularly sweet this year. The tea flowers were plentiful and one can suck on the pollen, like honeysuckle. Mr. Chen makes his Jia Long Oolong, and his wife deep fries some super delicious tea leaf tempura and makes a wild ginger flower egg roll. They were busy, all very busy, during this harvest season, as our group of travelers intruded upon their timeless land. Tea is timeless, and these farmers never age, or at least, I could hope. Today, I thought about why we go through such great lengths to go to places of origin, and not only that, to go to these tiny boutique farms where every leaf is important, to learn and bring back these teas. It’s obvious that few people care about such things in the U.S., and bringing on the education seems counterproductive to consumerism. Or was I simply idealistic about it all? Tea is an embodiment of taste, culture, and well being. The well being part covers physical, yes, but also spiritual well being. It is really indescribable why that is, and like a finger pointing to the moon as they say, can only be alluded to. Then of course, why is spiritual well being important? In our techno savvy, fast paced materialistic world, the timelessness of something eternal like tea, can only be understood by few. As I sat tonight lamenting about such great teas I can not even describe, let alone share in any influential way, I find myself wondering, if not all of this is a waste of time. Why write about it when I can sit and drink it up and forget about it?