I’m an autumn girl. You can tell by the way my closet is fully stocked with sweaters, and my dresser full of tights and woolen socks—my shoe cabinet, full of boots. I crave the first touch of cold, which doesn’t come until early November here in Georgia. There is something about the way the leaves start to change the lines of the Blue Ridge and the way the animals start to run briskly after slow summer days of lounging to stay out of the southern heat.
I imagine what makes that time of year so special, is that it only lasts a brief moment—right before the leaves plunge to the earth and the cold pushes everyone inside.
Hot tea is a staple in my life. It reminds me of the fall—especially when I’m feeling really nostalgic for my sweater friends that I’ve packed away for the summer. This didn’t happen until last summer, on a trip where I went to Manhattan. One of my closest friends, Jacobi, and I, ventured across the island together to a restaurant that we had been longing to go to. It served tea, and neither of us really considered ourselves tea drinkers.
I’ve never liked the taste of tea—which is often considered strange in the Deep South, where babies are given bottles of sweet tea, and it’s often the sole choice at formal gatherings. But I’d never tried hot tea before. There is something different about it. It has a history—a secret to tell, trapped in the spices.
Tea is simple. It uncomplicates things. In the Chinese culture, tea is the upmost representation of humility and grace—something that a host would present to his guest. It humbles the drinker, and serves as a reminder that in the moment, there is nothing else more important that what you are doing. It warms you from the cold, and becomes a comfort when everything seems to be moving quickly—like the changing of seasons.
I’ve got a lot of changes coming up within the next month, and I take solidity in knowing that not everything is as monstrous of an undertaking as I make it seem.