Friday, April 1, 2016

An Earl Grey

I got you Lemon Lift,  my pal
Fiona said, setting a cup and
saucer before me with a tea
bag nestled next to the 
hot water.

It was either that or Earl Grey,
she explained, wrinkling her
nose just slightly as she
settled into the cafe chair.

Someone must like it, I replied,
shaking my head as I tried to
imagine such a thing.

Chuckling companionably, we 
bobbed our tea bags in the
steaming water, two peas in a
pod who would never choose
Earl Grey.

I used to hate chamomile, I
admitted, but it's grown on me.

What about cilantro?  she asked.

Or plain Greek yogurt? I replied.

Pink jelly beans? she countered.

With the exception of the pink
jelly beans (what flavor is that,
anyway?), we agreed that there
are some tastes that require
numerous exposures before you
truly like them, if you ever
do, at all.

Later that spring day, while 
scouring a vintage shop for
treasures, Fiona held up a
funny little dress, its fabric
a riot of 1970's colors.

That might be an Earl Grey,
I responded, and as we laughed,
a new phrase was written in 
our friends forever lexicon:

An Earl Grey:  Something that
appeals to someone, somewhere,
even though it doesn't appeal 
to you (right now).

I added the right now because
the chamomile, cilantro and
plain Greek yogurt were 
evidence that one's tastes
could change.

As mine did favorably, 
a year later, for Earl Grey.

Yep, you read that right. In a
pinch last summer I accepted 
a cup of Earl Grey tea -- the
dubious flavor that inspired 
this whole post --

and I liked it. 

Which made me wonder how 
many other Earl Greys -- things,
experiences, moments -- I passed
over at first because the idea
didn't appeal or I had tried it
once and it wasn't my cup
of tea.

(Sorry, couldn't resist.)

Aloe vera juice (ugh) 
Painting (not artistic) 
Neti pots (yukky)
Weight lifting (boring)
Pressure Cookers (scary)
Running (torture)
Turmeric (trendy)
Podcasts (huh?)

These are just a few things 
that I shrugged off in the
recent past, only to revisit
them again and find that they 
aren't just okay, they are
pretty darn great....for me.

(Although the aloe vera juice 
may never become an acquired
taste, despite its health

I still don't like pink jelly
beans, but my Earl Grey moment
taught me that I should keep
trying new things and new
adventures, despite my initial

What are some of your 

Earl Greys?

Your assumptions are your
windows on the world.  Scrub
them off every once in awhile,
or the light won't come in.

~ Isaac Asimov


(all pics my own)


Dawn Y. said...

I just adore your beautiful tea cup, Suzanne! Such a thoughtful post! My 'Earl Grey' is actually Earl Grey tea. You have inspired me to try it again. It's a favorite of friends and family, so I always have 'guest' Earl Grey tea at hand. My other 'Earl Greys' are sushi and pilates. I haven't tried these adventures... yet! I'm blossoming (my One Little Word this year) in so many exciting, new ways this year! Hoping to try lots of new 'Earl Greys!' ♡Dawn@Petals.Paper.SimpleThymes + @CottageBlooms

Rambling Tart said...

This makes me smile so big. :-) I've adored Earl Grey my whole life, but my "Earl Grey's" include olives, red wine, law work, traveling by myself. I've grown to love them all. :-)

Linda @ Itsy Bits And Pieces said...

How fun! I have so many Earl Greys in my life...including the aforementioned cilatro and avocados (both of which tasted like soap to me, and I can eat by the plateful now). I was in my 40's before I developed my love for coffee and tea. And I have come to love the quiet...I always had to have a tv or some noise going on. I relish the peace now. And I am continuing to try things, too...otherwise, who knows what we might miss!
Hope you have a lovely weekend, Suzanne!

Charm Bracelet Diva {at Home} said...

Earl Gray has always been and always will be my favorite tea! I drink about 2-3 cups a day....your experiences remind me of how when my kids were little I kept trying to get them to try the same food over and over because it's statistically proven that after a certain number of times they're bound to like it! As a kid I never liked cheese (love it!) and never ate spicy food. Now Sriracha is my middle name:) xoKathleen

Jeanie said...

This is a terrific post! I've had one similar in my draft file on rediscovering your culinary nemsis for ages! Those would be my Earl Grey's and among them are brussels sprouts, sweet potatoes, eggplant, red wine, mocha flavoring. Still can't quite manage the coffee!

Travel With Lulu said...

I realized a lot of my opinions on things (olives, brussel sprouts) were actually my mom's taste preference. Over time I've been discovering my own.

Funny thing I learned about Earl Grey tea in England is it's the only black tea that you should not add milk to - a social no-no. Go figure! Would love to chat over a cup of Earl Grey one day :) xox

Barb Brookbank said...

I loved every single thing about this post - I smiled throughout the whole time I read it - wonderful shots of your teacup too!

Ella said...

How beautiful, Suzanne! I hated Earl Grey the first time I tasted it, but now I love it~ Discovery of how this brew calms me-nixes my anxiety, had me sipping many blends. I love how this brew enchants
my senses~
Cheers, to tea and making our own discoveries!

Elizabeth@ Pine Cones and Acorns said...

They say that your tastes change every 5 years, I am not sure who they are or where I read that but I know for myself it is true. There are many things that are my earl grey, like licorice, ice cream, anything that comes out of water, mushrooms, peas, and that is just a few things.

I love your thoughtful post and beautiful tea cups! I hope that you had a wonderful time with your beautiful Elizabeth over the holiday.

Take care have a beautiful week.