Tea House Chatter

Litha Summers Song

Posted by Bruce on July 06, 2014
Check it Out!, Hmmm Good, Tea House Chatter / No Comments

2a0eebd99256bc0733fb1a5d00af7205One of my favourite things to do is to celebrate the seasons.  There are so many amazing ways to take the time to enjoy the changing of the seasonal guard.  The one celebration I love the most is the Sabbat of “Litha”; also known as the Summer Solstice.  It takes place on June 21st and it marks the coming of Summer and the celebration of the Sun!  I like to take my amazing dog with me and mark the day with a hike down the Don Valley!  It’s just a great time to get back to nature, which I like to do as much as I can.
This is a time for fire!  The Sun has grown and we are finally free from the frost of Winter’s grasp, which this past winter was horrific!  One of the worst in reason memory in fact.  Midsummers eve is a time for love magic!  Herbs collected on this night are said to be most potent!  Well, I am certainly all for that!  Bring on the herbs!
It’s at this time of year, and after my long hike, that I love to visit one of my favourite tea spots, “David’s Tea”.  I’m sure I have mentioned them before but well worth another mention.  I love the way they line up the tins of tea.  You can take your time and smell the aromas and choose just the right tea for how you are feeling or what you may be celebrating.  On this day I choose something light and fruity.  I also choose it prepared over ice.  An amazing treat and they even put out a water dish for Agnetha (my dog) to enjoy!  Not enough shops put a dish out for the pups and I refuse to go in if they don’t!
There a several David’s Teas in Toronto.  My two favourite locations are Church St. and Uptown Yonge! The staff is always so helpful.  I love stopping in to say hello and enjoy the tea!
I had mentioned earlier that I enjoy a book about the seasons.  This book is called “The Wiccan Year” by Judy Ann Nock (Author of A Witch’s Grimoire- I have that one too).  It’s a fairly new release so if you’re into that sort of thing you should check it out.
Throughout the wheel of the year, I will share some bits and pieces of it with you.  The next noteworthy day on the Wiccan Calendar is Lughnasad which takes place on August 1st.  The first day of the Celtic Autumn!  But let’s enjoy the Summer first shall we?
Well the city is bustling now and it’s time for us to take our tea and head back down through the path!  It’s an amazing trail.  One I also like to visit in the Fall. The leaves are just outstanding!
B.I.T.C
Check out my link of David’s Tea on the side bar!

Editor: Mary Ellen Smith

 

 

Dancing Blueberries!

Posted by Bruce on September 08, 2013
Shops, Tea House Chatter / No Comments

You know sometimes I am just the luckiest kid on the block. I have been writing my weekly blog  since October 2010 and I have met some of the most interesting people and have eat’n and shopped at some of the cutest little spots and I love writing about them.

It happened to me yet again.  I popped out of Toronto for about 30 seconds and stumbled upon the cutest little tea shop east of the milky way!  I was visiting my Mom and Dad in Peterborough. It’s such a funny little place, Peterborough. I really enjoy going there. The little downtown is actually pretty fabulous and I have featured another fun spot a while ago, a karaoke bar.

Now don’t get me wrong I wouldn’t stay in that little city too long because lurking around every second corner is a crazy person.  Ya, it’s true. They just pop out from behind the bushes and flash you there what’s it’s. I think, I might have glimpsed an upper boob that read “Not your ordinary Grandma!”  It’s a cute place you know but it’s like any other place that’s surrounded by to much farm land and low water levels, something odd happens to the inhabitancies!

In this city the folks are encouraged to cross the railroad tracks to get to the local pub! What happens when they all come back half corked? The cities population is always fluctuating and the locals blame it on the seasons!

The air is kinda funny in Peterborough. There is always a hint of something more.  No it’s not manure. It’s a little greener.  it just seems to edge by the nostrils as you stroll the downtown core.  Funny, that air is. Really seems to help you relax.  I really chill out when I’m exploring the downtown.

It was after a few hefty inhauls of that wonderful green air, that I noticed the “Dancing Blue Berries”  Just there! Inviting me to cop a spot.  I was really looking for the perfect place to let the burdens of my life role away.  I had a seat just by the window so I could see the strange passers by. So many still wearing plaid and jeans that flared from the hips down.  What a site. People not concerned about how hideous there fashion sense was but were on a mission to get to that bingo hall of hope.  Good times!

I felt inspired and I began to miss Toronto.  Then the sweetest girl came up to me and asked me what I’d be having. She playfully went through the types of tea they had and I made my choice. You could tell she loved what she was doing.  She was a quirky little thing.  Remind me a bit of Pippi Longstocking!The décor was so special as well. Like a tea shop of old right out of “The Little House on the Prairie”. There were no dirt floors though, no. They had real floors. All polished up and yet warn some.  The shop had been there a while and had seen many travellers.  Now I was one of them. Taking a load off.  A real break from the big city.  It reminded me of Belleville but with more teeth.  A place I lived many moons ago. Most of the moons were down by the bay, where the boys met on a Saturday night. It was there I lost my true love to someone else’s full moon!

I placed my little order. I wanted something sweet and something calming. I decided on some Camomile tea and the pecan pie.   When she brought it to my table I was surprised to see it was real tea. Not from a bag but loose leaf tea. Just the way I like it.  And, to top it off it was served in an old fashion porcelain tea cup. It was amazing. You know, tea tastes way better from a porcelain tea cup!!  You must try it. If you are the brawly man type you can always try it alone in bed as you watch an episode of hog racing. That way no one has to know you’re cultured.

The tea was amazing and the desert I had, was moan worthy. I just kept moaning every time I took a bite and in fact there were many moans coming from the other patrons as they tasted their deserts and sipped their tea. It was hot! The tea! We all moaned together and sipped, nibbled and smiled at each other.

We couldn’t decide whether we were high off the homemade sugary goodness or that Peterborough air, that kept wafting in from porch.   Whatever it was, the air, the tea or that fabulous pie, I will certainly be back the next time I visit my folks!

Dancing Blue Berries

http://dancingblueberries.ca/

5 kisses out of 5

B.I.T.C

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Christmas? I’ve had my Phil!

Posted by Bruce on December 25, 2012
Holiday Stories, Star Moments, Tea House Chatter / No Comments

It all started with a text.  “I’ve got something to tell you.” It read. I was working my six days a week, nine plus hours a day as Christmas Day headed steadily before me. When you read a text like this, it’s easy to think the worst.  “The apocalypse is here!” I was on a quick break at work and took that moment to find out just what my friend wanted. “Phillip Phillips is going to be at the Pickering Town Center!”

How fabulous! I just think he is amazing! I should have placed bets on the fact that he was going to win American Idol, when he sang “Thriller” in his own swagger, I knew right then and there he was headed for the crown. “Do you wanna go see him?” “Ah, is a frogs ass water tight?” I thought! Of course I had to rearrange my work schedule, I mean it wasn’t just a performance but a chance for a meet and greet, with autograph!!

After only some minor begging to my manager the switch was made and it was off to P.T.C for some Phillip Phillips.  The day of the performance I was suffering from a self inflicted dehydration problem. The night before I stayed over at my girlfriends place and in all the prep to meet Phillips, we might have had one too many Caesars and one too many hours on the Michael Jackson “Just Dance” game! Of course we stayed up way past our bedtimes and I had forgotten to take her two year old and six month old into consideration in the early morning wake up call. You just don’t wake up and go. These kids want breakfast, changing, attention!!! It’s a nightmare.

Once we got them all settled in to the family van! Horrific, my girlfriend and I were off to see the wizard! Actually if I had to be honest her kids are pretty fabulous and it was a hoot playing  Dad for a day.

I headed str8 for the nearest tea shop, which at P.T.C it is “Teavana” I felt like a cheat but they didn’t have a David’s Tea so I gave these tea baggers a dunk.  I spun into the shop and declared “I’m hung over, fix me!” The fabulous girls and one Asian guy were busy dunking, pouring and serving and I needed to get me one of those beverages toot sweet. She got the bucket of tea cent and wooshed it across me nose. Apparently it is the perfect hang over remedy. All I remember is that it was a white tea, at about five bucks a pop but it worked!! I had three that day while waiting for Phillips! I spent fifteen bucks on tea! I must have been hung over but it was well worth it.

I was thrilled when “Bruce in the City” got the star treatment from security at the mall and roped me and guests our own section just beside the stage! It was only right, we did wait nine hours!! Horrific!

As far as this whole Christmas season is concerned all I can say is… I’ve had my Phil!

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Teavana

5 kisses out of 5

http://www.teavana.com/

David’s Tea and The Texter

Posted by Bruce on December 16, 2012
Tea House Chatter / No Comments

Wow, so we are knee deep into December and for some reason, even with my Christmas DVD and Holiday TV watching I’m just not quite there yet.  I’m not sure what it is.  I think it may be because I am knee deep in work and blogging and everything.  Do you ever wonder “How did I get here?” and with all the crazy business of working, texting seems to be your only way of communing with those who mean the most to you.

I was kinda feeling sentimental and a bit lonely this week because I have been so busy that I have not had the chance to really see anyone so far this December. Christmas is just around the corner and living in a big city can feel even more lonely because it seems like routine is so obscure.  I don’t mean the routine of work but the routine that is friendship.

When I was living in Belleville for a bit the one thing I noticed was, it was easy to get to know almost everyone that worked around you.  A routine got put into motion allot easier.  I can’t explain why but in the big city, with hundreds of passers by every single day, routine seems very out of the question.

Then something interesting happened.  I noticed  familiar person waiting for the bus, a couple eating at the food court, a guy rushing through the subway turnstyle, that familiar smile from the girls at “David’s Tea” a fantastic tea place in the mall that I work at.

Suddenly it dawned on me.  It’s there!  Routine!  Almost all the same faces coming and going to and from work and visiting shops that I frequent often enough to receive their familiar and friendly hello. There really is no difference between here and that small city 2 hours east from here, after-all.  We are all just moving around a little bit faster.

So as I am feeling a little tired and over worked and have barely even begun my Christmas shopping, it’s great to know I am not alone.  All the faces I see travelling and rushing and waiting and texting and sipping there herbal teas are all doing the same thing I am, trying to get in touch with the ones they love.  It was comforting.  It was so very small town.

As I ordered my “Hot and Thin” at “David’s Tea” along with a dozen other’s and got myself revved up for the second half of my long work day, I found myself texting like there was no tomorrow.  Touching base with the ones I loved.  I looked around and saw little smiles and grins from people getting messages on their mobiles.  The familiar face behind the counter said to have a great day and smiled.

I know one thing as I walked away holding my tea like sacred water, the wonderful girl behind the tea began to text someone…. and I hoped she would reach them and as I made my way down the shopping mall I found myself texting to someone I care about hoping for that enthusiastic reply.

David’s Tea

5 kisses out of 5

www.davidstea.com

Life With Tea

Posted by Bruce on May 13, 2012
Book Review, Coffee Shops, Tea House Chatter / 2 Comments

Sometimes I just love getting up on a day I have nothing to do and I hop on the TTC and head somewhere. Anywhere. No plan. I just go and see where I end up.  It’s amazing how much you miss in the city you live in so sometimes I let my curiosity get the best of me and spend hours just being lost in my city. I highly recommend it. Don’t tell anyone. Just roam around your city. It’s amazing the time you will have on your own.

So I’m out and I come across a really great book sale at East York Town Center.  Sipping my mineral water, I take a trip around the table.  I started in foods of the world and ended up at self help for erectile dysfunction.  I was just about to give up when a noticed a perfectly square book called “teany” (a book about tea and New York)by non other than Moby. Curious. I take a peak and decide I’d give this baby a whirl. It was perfect timing as I had to head into Oshawa to visit an old friend I hadn’t seen in years and this read would be my companion along the way.

The last book I read was “Dracula” so it was time. I have to admit this book is more of the perfect coffee table, tea house, train ridin, bus tourin kinda read. It’s no novel. Moby opened a tea house in New York and this is it’s companion. Really cute and has some interesting historical facts about New York. I gotta get my butt back there for a jaunt around.

As I pull into the Oshawa train station, I was pretty excited about meeting up with my long time buddy, who had just spent the last two years of her life in the pit of Hell, fighting her way back from illness. She was diagnosed with Cancer and my watch stood still when I found out. We sat together in the food court in the Oshawa Center and we sipped our tea’s and for the first time I heard her story of survival and triumph over her illness.

I watched her go from laughter to tears and back to laughter as she told me everything she could recall of her journey. She told me once you go through something like that you are never the same. You look at the world and your life and everyone in it from a different set of eyes when you get of real taste of mortality.  Her story was inspiring and as scary as the melting snow caps and I had mentioned that she should write a book.

As I  shared some thoughts with her and we discuss both sides of life the good and the bad. One thing was clearer than ever. Neither time, illness, disappointment or success could ever be more important than friendship and family.

The sad thing was, that in hearing about her journey, it was amazing how little some of those around her really grasped and appreciated what she went through and what a true miracle it is that she is still here.  Maybe it is the way they cope, who am I to judge but I understood that she even has family members who are not speaking with her. I wanted to just reach out and slap them. As her eyes filled with tears and she said “Isn’t it enough that I beat cancer but now I have to beat the way my —— are treating me?”

I didn’t know what to say.  Imagine going through such a scary possibility to come out the other side to have those closest to you kick you in the ass again. I can’t imagine! I held her hands and said you will get through this. The mood lightened slightly when I said “Girl you have the name of your book!” I told her and she laughed her head off. I do hope she uses it. It will be a million seller.

Isn’t it amazing what life gets lived, with tea? Think of everything you have experienced. Tea is not far behind. As we finished up ours, I grabbed my teany book and slipped it into my travel bag. “Let’s do lunch!” I said. Time flew and after lunch it was time for me to be off. She waited at the bus stopped with me and I had hoped she would follow me back to Toronto.

As I curled up on the train that was preparing to take me home, I thought. “Life with Tea. If it were only so simple.  All the best my dear friend. I’ll always be in your corner.” From the overhead speakers “Stand clear of the doors. The doors are now closing. Our next station stop…..”

B.

Starbucks

419 West King Street, #1135
Oshawa, ON L1J2K5

Tel: (905) 438-9838

3 kisses out of 5 (they were super slow)

http://www.moby.com/

teany the book

4 kisses out of 5

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