donderdag 12 juli 2012

Two days of learning and fun

In this blog I'm going to write about 2 amazing experiences this week. The first one was having tea together with Nicolas in Brussels, the second experience was in Antwerps together with Mei Lan.

Tuesday afternoon I went to Brussels, after getting a bit of lost I finaly found Nicolas home. He gave me a warm welcome and we went to sit around the biggest and most beautiful teaboat I've seen so far in very comfortable couches. Because my French isn't too great and he sometimes had problems understanding some English words (though his English is a lot better than mine French...) we had his laptop next to us so we could use google translate.  I don't know where to start writing. We had such a great talks, lots of laughter and fun. We've tried 5 different kinds of tea including baozhong, wuyi rock oolong, Taiwanese high mountain oolong, 2 outstanding puerh's. The tea that intrigued me the most were his puerh cakes. It's the first time that I was able to compare different ages of puerh and also to smell them and notice how storage influences their smell and taste. Also I experienced some great cha qi, my body and mind were relaxed and at the same time so attentfull. We talked about tea for many many hours and I was sad to leave though at the same time happy because I was able to learn so much about teapots, puerh tea and many others. Thank you again Nicolas for being a great host and teacher!
And because pictures say more than a thousand words...

Old puerh, lovely colours

We ended up with a total of 4 pots and 1 gaiwan

One of his beautiful teapots.
 The next day I was going to Antwers to meet Mei Lan. We met eachother at Teaworld where I was struck by her enthousiasm about tea. She is such a little lady but so full of energy and passionate about the things she does. In the morning when I woke up the sun was shining so I put on my fivefinger shoes and some short pants but when I arrived in Antwerp the weather has turned into a Belgian mousson rain with ice balls. When I arrived at Mei Lan's place my feet were soaked. Luckily I took an umbrella with me. We had a lovely afternoon together. She served me some great teas and some snacks. She told me many stories about Chinese history and I tried to listen as concentrated as possible so I would remember it all. China has such a rich culture and so many wisdoms. It amazes me how a single person can have so much knowledge! When talking to her I realised that there is still a long way ahead of me to become a good teamaster. I told her I wanted to pracitse Chinese (and in the past I did study it for a while) and she helped me with the tones and explained me how a Chinese dictionary works. I was invited for dinner where we had some lovely french fries (Chinese tea and Belgian fries, could it get any better?). After that she had a little surprise for me. She opened a big box of samples and I had the honour to try a tea with her for the very first time. It was one of the best teas I've encountered till this date, it was a Taiwanese red tea.  I bought a few different kinds of tea and I also received a sample of mulberry tea which we also tried together. After the tea was finished I had to go because it already was 10pm and I had to get my last train! Luckily I was born with long legs so I arrived right on time.

Taiwan flashback

Mei Lan preparing tea

Morning Dew white tea from Taiwan

In these 2 days I've learned so many things I still don't know where to put them in my head, I'm still decoding all the information I've received. They are 2 completely different people and they have different views on tea but in the end what connects us is our love and passion for this way of life. There is no good or no wrong way as long as we enjoy drinking tea and being together as friends. What can a person still need more in life?

1 opmerking:

  1. Hi Rist,

    That was an excellent afternoon to drink tea with you.

    I hope to see you soon