Few things are as satisfying as sitting down with a good cup of tea and a good book. I sense many of you readers nodding along in agreement, but I wonder exactly why this is the case. Having recently (and unusually) had some time to get deeply stuck into a good book, I have been pondering this question. And, needless to say, if I am at home, I put the kettle on as I settle down to read. Here are a few musings on books and tea that have come out of this recent experience:
- For me, there is a sense of ritual in both tea drinking and book reading. I have my places that I like to sit and read and times of the day that I prefer to read at. Likewise, there are specific ways I like to make my tea, and the act of putting the kettle on, brewing the tea, and then settling down to sip it are all part of my daily routines. This sense of ritual I have for both reading and tea drinking complement and reinforce one another.
- Reading and drinking tea are both activities that are about having time to myself. Whilst it is true that I often drink tea in the company of others, and that sometimes tea is a rushed cuppa squeezed into my schedule, for the most part having a cup of tea means taking some time for myself. Likewise, serious reading only occurs when I have the time to really invest in it.
- Unless I am reading a fast paced page-turner, I like to take breaks during reading to contemplate and ponder the things I am reading about. What better moment to sip some tea? But more than that, I think that the act of sipping tea, or pouring another cup, means that I actually do contemplate things, rather than just staring off into space.
- My last thought (for now) on this subject is that drinking tea and reading are activities that complement each other year round. In the winter, there are few things more enjoyable than snuggling up with a book and a hot cup of tea on the couch. However, an equally appealing prospect is to stretch out in the summer sun with a good book and a glass of chilled iced tea within arm’s reach. In other words, they are something that can always go together.
I often drink tea without reading, and there are many occasions when I open my book for a bit without a cup of tea by my side. But when I am able to combine these two things, it seems to me that each complements the other and by doing so increases my enjoyment of both. So here’s to many more hours of reading whilst drinking tea!
See more of Elise Nuding’s articles here.
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