A good cup of tea

60 seconds on the subject of "A good cup of tea" without hesitation, deviation or repetition, starting now.

A good cup of tea, I always find, is one that you make yourself. I have a little routine that I always follow when I am at home. First I empty the kettle of any previous water and refill it to the level of the sticker we added to the outside, and turn it on of course. This comes first because it takes the longest, nothing if not optimised. Next I empty the thermos of old tea, give it a rinse and leave it with the lid off. Then take the tea cosy from the teapot and leave it over the thermos, the teapot then gets emptied, neither of these have beeen actually washed in ages. Ok,maybe the tea cosy has, my sister made it. Next we get the tea cannister out of the cupboard over the tea things and put two tea bags in the pot. After the water has boiled I pour it into the pot up to the rim, replace the lid and the tea cosy, I set a timer for 8 minutes. Obviously now I wait..

Tea pouring also has a ritual, the milk should go in first. Yes I know this is a custom evolved from when the delicate china cups would otherwise break from the hot tea, but too bad, its The Way Its Done now. After milk, the tea from the pot, the rest goes in the thermos, currently an Argos brand, and holding up well, don't forget to put the lid on the thermos, I've done that a few times. Other common mistakes are forgetting to put any tea bags into the pot and trying to turn hot water into tea with milk later, and forgetting to put the lid on the teapot under the tea cosy, which makes it damp and pouring is interesting but still works. Where was I, milk, tea, and then sugar, also stored above the tea things, then we're done.

Some people take my tea obsession to mean I'm a connoisseur, that is that I like fancy tea, but no, plain ole PG Tips is just fine. No loose tea please as thats too much faff, its quantity here not quality, hence the thermos. I barely drink anything else.

I do have trouble with tea while not at home. Hotels with tray-in-room are lovely, but sadly mostly a british thing. Although I will menton the Days Inn in Lancaster, PA here as they did provde one, even if it was with a coffee machine/boiler not a kettle, it'll do in a pinch.

Harder is when I'm out and about and trying to get tea from various coffee shops and the like, the great british tea shop having somewhat disappeared around here. They have this awful habit of using not quite boiled water, and/or then dumping the milk right in on top of the tea bag before its had a milisecond to brew. Do these barristas not get taught anyhing?

dingdingding .. oh, did I run over by several minutes? ..