I am, I freely admit, a creature of habit. I like to start my day off with a nice strong cup of black tea. Usually this would be Earl Gray, but, ever since I found the European Import store in town, I have alternated between Earl Gray and Czar Nikolas II, or Cesarz Mikolaj, as we call it at home. I love this tea for how lightly flavored it is (it could almost pass for just a straight black tea), and for the fact that the package refuses to divulge what the flavor IS, with the ingredients saying simply: “tea, spices.” That is the kind of passive aggressive contrariness I can really get behind.

It also brews up dark. Really dark. Probably since, being in the Russian style, it is meant for use in a samovar, where a little of it is meant to go a long way. Technically, I suppose that means I’m Doing It Wrong, and I DO cut it with some straight black tea later on in the day, but I like my tea sludge-tastic in the morning. Wakes me right up.

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I’m a Pole who grew up in Texas, is currently a graduate student in California studying Japan. How’s THAT for random?

Being Polish, my family has always drunk a lot of tea, and I am no different. I may drink more tea than water. On the other hand, I can’t say that I’m very particular about it; I’m generally pretty careless with steeping times and water temperature and I don’t even have a proper teapot (mostly because the lid broke during the move to California ;_;).

I always drink my tea unsweetened and I only add milk in the case of the most egregiously chai-ish of chais. (not really a big fan of milk in general)

Given that so many of my entries seem to be about my morning tea, I felt I should add something here about me and mornings: I fail at mornings. I fail at them a LOT. Therefore I often also fail at proper tea making in the mornings.


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