My Tea Transformation (Guest Post: Jenni Austria Germany)

Today one of my favorite bloggers is here to hang out with you all! 
Jenni is one of those people who is 
a.) super gorgeous in all of her photos...(this girl can't take a bad photo, seriously!)
b.) has a totally awesome European lifestyle...(totally jealous? I am!)
c.) is one of THE nicest people you'll meet. 

I know you'll love her, and feel the need to hurry over to check out and follow her blog, if you're not already. (You are following her already, right? Good.) 

So here's the thing about me and tea. 
First, you should know 2 things:  1)  I am, quite possibly, the most smell-oriented person on the planet Earth and 2) I hate, hate,hate drinking anything that is lukewarm or warmer.  Now, where was I?  Oh, yes.  My history with tea.

I have this memory of being a very small child and sitting with my dad, who, at the time, was holding and drinking a cup of tea.  He was recovering from pneumonia and this is the only time I can ever recall seeing him with a teacup (as opposed to a rifle, a dead bird, a screwdriver or a pair of muddy boots - we're Oklahomans, okay?) in his hand.  He made me take a sip (should I have been drinking after a person recovering from pneumonia?  probably not) and not only did I hate both the taste and the fact that it was so warm but I hated the smell as well.  And when I say I hated it, I mean I abhorred it.  Since that moment (which was, I'd say...18 years ago?), I haven't been able to smell a cup of tea, let alone drink it, without wanting to throw up a little bit.  Until.....wait, no, I'll come back to that.  Just let it be known that for a long, long time, I despised tea.

This was never a problem for me growing up in Oklahoma.  See, the thing is, no one really drinks tea in Oklahoma.  I mean, sure, some people drink it, but no one really drinks it.  Know what I mean?  In Oklahoma, most people drink iced tea or lemonade or milk or water or beer or soda or milk or pop or milk or maybe coffee or milk or coke.  Get the picture?  

So I lived the first 2 decades of my life tea-free and didn't think twice about it.  Until.....I moved to Europe.....

People in Europe love tea.  They love coffee, too.  But they love tea.  For me, coffee is out of the question.  Sometimes I wish I liked it (oh, how I love the smell of it!) but usually I'm glad to have never had a cup of it.  I'm of the opinion that if your body needs coffee to wake up - if itneeds coffee to function - then you have a problem  (Maybe you are addicted to caffeine?  Maybe you are sleep deprived?).  But I'm not here to talk about the dangers of regularly consuming a highly acidic beverage that lays a welcoming mat for the cancer cells which thrive in acidic environments -- on the contrary, I'm here to talk about tea!

My abstinence from tea became a hindrance to my European lifestyle rather quickly.  What do you do when your Polish boyfriend's grandmother invites you over for "a tea"?  What do you do when your German colleague asks you to stop by after work and "catch up over a cup of tea"?  What do you do when your Austrian hosts serve your breakfast alongside a big, steaming - you guessed it - pot of tea?  Well, here are your options.  You either politely decline and explain that you just don't drink tea but would love a glass of non-carbonated (good luck with that) water OR you drink it.  At first, I said to myself, "No!  I can't, I won't!  These are my values and I will die for my values!  Without my values, I am nothing!".  And then, I realized something; tea is good for you.  Yeah, it's really good for you.  Also, values?  What values?  I wasn't drinking tea because I was being a baby, not because it clashed with my beliefs.

So I started reading about the miracles that decaffeinated green tea can perform on your body:  It's anti-aging...  It's good for your skin....  It fights cancer...  It combats allergies...  It lowers your blood pressure.  I started reading more and more and I liked what I read.  The only thing I didn't like?  The taste.  The smell.  The temperature.

And then...I started to get over all of that.  Once I really thought about how beneficial it would be to drink a cup of tea each night before bedtime, the taste and smell and temperature didn't matter so much.  I trained myself by adding a lemon slice or a tablespoon of raspberry juice every now and then.  

And that's where I am now.  While I don't know if I'll ever be one of those people (like the Polish boyfriend mentioned 2 paragraphs ago) who can drink 4 cups of tea per day, I no longer have to stifle a gag when someone offers me a cup.  I accept the offer...and I drink the tea....and I like it.  And then I feel really classy and sophisticated and grown up.  And maybe I even feel a little bit British.

So, for those of you who might struggle with a self-imposed tea allergy, fear not (Or maybe I am the only person in the history of the world who at one point in their life, couldn't stand the thought of drinking tea?  It's possible).

This concludes the story of my transformation.  It's riveting, I know.  And now you get to look at a picture of me and a tea kettle because, well, we're talking about tea.  And because, though this photo is at least 3 years old, it's the only one I have that remotely pertains to this topic.


Ashley Lane Hamlin said...

HA! Love it.

Green tea does take a bit of getting used to. I have to get one of the flavored kinds usually.

Alyssa said...

Green tea is actually one of my least favorite teas in regards to taste. I can drink it, but I usually prefer something else.

Anonymous said...

:) Love this! LOL I love green tea...I've found many brands who sell fruit-flavored green tea that are quite yummy!

Jenni Austria Germany said...

thanks again for having me! can't wait to see your vacay pics :)

Mikelle Jade said...

cute top. I'm actually not a huge tea drinker either. I really only drink it when I'm sick-- there is this really good tea you can get at the Asian market! But I definitely think I could learn to like tea if I lived in Europe too :)

Unknown said...

You are SO interesting! The tea story and the reasoning behind it. I used to hate tea as well, and coffee (don't even get me started!) but like you, I discovered teas for their many healthy properties and started looking into teas that are infused with fruits or plants and the plainness of a boring cup of green will get you interested in many varieties :) Currently, I really love Mighty Leaf's Tropical Green Tea. It's very fruity, a bit floral and healthy :)
I'm surrounded by tea everywhere I go. People in California love it (along w/their coffee and energy drinks). Plus, I am Chinese and the Chinese regards tea highly for over 1000 yrs or something! hehe

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