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keychange said

Hello--I'm new!

Hello steepsterites!(?) (I hope I haven’t offended anyone already—you never know what terms become socially unacceptable haha)

I thought I’d introduce myself and begin soaking up all the tea wisdom you fine folks have to offer. I’m from Ontario Canada, and although I haven’t been exposed to too many types of tea, I come from a Pakistani family, so have definitely had a lot of chai in my lifetime (this has incidentally also led to my having a preference for pretty strongly flavoured tea). My exploration began when a friend introduced me to David’s tea, and my love of things that smell wonderful and obsessive personality took off on an epic journey and my bank account has already begun to suffer (I’m pretty sure that delivery slip on my front door was for my art of Tea white and black samplers(! I’m determined to also refine my pallet so that I can really enjoy more mild teas (like white tea) without instantly coming to the conclusion that I’m just drinking very lightly flavoured hot water. I think what makes my tea journey really interesting is that I’m also almost completely blind (so I come complete with screenreading technology and a lovely guide dog who says he’ll pass on the tea unless he can eat it). The most annoying part of being a blind tea drinker, actually, is the fact that I can’t read the labels on my tea, so have to remember which smell goes with which tea, which can actually be a bit more tricky than it seems! (I have a Braille label-maker though, but think I’ll reserve that for actual tins, and not use it on samples). Because I use my nose a lot, you might not be surprised to learn that I’m also obsessed with fragrance!
Alright, I’ll stop boring you with my life story. I’m just happy to be here, and would love to learn more about you guys!

11 Replies
Uniquity said

That is really interesting! Sorry, I am totally stuck on the blind thing right now. Maybe part of your preference for strong teas is because you can differentiate them before steeping really easily, haha. I am sure you have lots of tricks to get through your day but when my grandmother went blind the family put rubber bumps on things like the microwave keys so she could figure out which was where. If you have a small enough collection (and a good enough memory!) you could DIY braille it that way or something.

If you are looking to try new teas, I always recommend www.teavivre.com. They have good quality teas at good prices and offer a free tea tasting activity so you can get a sense of what you like without investing too heavily. They are in China so the shipping is slow, but I have placed a couple orders with them and their customer service is very good as well.

Happy teas!

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Anna said

Haha, I loved reading this – obsessive personalities unite!

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Alysha said

Welcome to Steepster! I’m sure you’ll discover lots of new teas to love on here (though you might have to warn your bank account!)

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keychange said

Thanks for the warm welcome, guys! And it’s ok to be “stuck” on the blind thing, although I can’t say I’m stuck on it myself—it’s not exactly new for me LOL.
Thanks for the tea suggestions, also. It’s always good to know I can look for tea online without too too great a financial consequence.
Yay for obsessive personalities!

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Welcome! I think you will have fun here!

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gmathis said

Welcome. Clear your calendar and ditch a hobby or two…Steepster is addictive!

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keychange said

Oh, I have no doubts whatsoever. I’m pretty sure I want to push the start date back a bit on working, but alas, I do need to grow up one of these days, and given I’ve been in school for the last million years, I suppose I’d better start “adulting” about now.
I have to say though: there’s just so so much information out there! differences between first and second flush Darjeeling? why different teas will fall to bits and taste like farts at different temperatures? why some strainers (or other fancy words for strainers) are better than others?
I think tea is much like anything else: no two people will do or enjoy it the same way, and once you’ve got your own momentum going, you’ll figure it out for yourself. :)
Thanks again for all the warm welcomes!

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Serenity said

A warm welcome indeed to you and to your dog! I love, absolutely love the fragrance of tea. One of my favorite things to do is to sniff the fresh tea leaves and then sniff the tea once it has steeped, ah, pure blissful scents!
Not to compare but just to share: I have an eye disease called uveitis. Right now I am between flares. : ) It’s like rheumatoid arthritis in the eye. I am not visually impaired, currently, but at one point did become completely blind in one of my eyes. Just wanted to share out of a sense of empathy.

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ashmanra said

Welcome! You will probably surpass all of us very soon with your prowess at detecting scents. You will nuance in the teas that most of us miss! Now that you are obsessed with tea, remember to set a little something aside to buy food. It is easy to put everything on low priority in the budget once you become a tea head like me! :)

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keychange said

Thanks, serenity and ashmanra!
serenity, I’m sorry that you’ve struggled with any sort of eye condition, regardless of how much or how little its impacted your life. I can’t imagine how frightening it must have been to lose that sight—certainly not because you couldn’t have adapted, but the suddenness and instability alone are quite stressful.
Ashmanra, I don’t know about surpassing anyone; you all seem like such experts here! And yes, budgetary priorities are already being reshuffled, so I appreciate the reminder about food! (I come from a Pakistani family, so flavourful food is a big deal in our family).

Serenity said

Thanks, keychange, for your kind response!
Are your family members enjoying any of your new teas, or are they loyal to chai only?

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