Saturday, November 22, 2008

Tea, Singapore, and Christmas

I found a lovely tea room/shop today, its called “Tea Party”, it was great, big pot of yummy tea, and 100 teas to choose from. Granted it was slightly expensive, but well worth it. Pretty funny people there too. Tea is so wonderful, I just don’t know where the world would be without it. Its not a single culture thing either, every culture has it. There is Chinese tea and tea ceremonies, Japanese tea, chai tea from India, roubos tea from Africa, Russian tea, English tea, Moroccan mint tea, and so many more. It’s crazy endless! I can’t wait explore the tea world some more in Singapore, I can’t believe I am heading to Singapore, in 40 days I will be in Singapore, that’s crazy, and frankly a little nerve ranking, but in a good way. I have been told a bit of what to expect, but I also don’t like “expecting” too much, because that can lead to me forming these pre-conceived expectations, which are often wrong. I just want to go with an open mind and heart, experience their cultures and many others as I will have a chance to travel around. I am excited to not be here when its cold, however I hope I don’t die from the humidity! I am excited to be put into another culture though. Feel the excitement and challenges.


Two years ago I spent four months in Botswana, an amazing culture experience for me, which was both challenging and rewarding. Many of the reasons it was rewarding was because it was challenging. I had never traveled anywhere really by myself, so this was a big step. To this day I don’t know what drove me to it, I just felt a need, therefore I listened to this feeling and set off. The culture was not extremely different, but living so far away from any and all safety nets I grew up with was hard. I had to rely on me and trust that everything with be ok. With this experience in my back pocket, I feel more prepared to head off to Singapore and Asia for 8 months. It will be the longest time I have ever been away from home on my own, but I think that is good. No doubt there will be nights of homesickness and tears, stomach sickness and well…you know…but I’m sure I will also learn a lot. Learn a lot of what, I am not sure.


However, that is still in 40 days, and now it is Christmas season! Which means insane amounts of Christmas crafting(I plan on creating all my sexy gifts this year…hopefully they arn’t shitty), yummy baking, and hiding from the cold outside. I would say playing in the snow, except we still have very limited snow blessings here in Ottawa yet! Oh, and for all my friends in school right now, it means lovely exams too.

Check out this Indian recipe, its sounds weird but is actually quite good. If you have ever had pakoras it kinda tastes like those, except baked, not fried, and made in your own home, perhaps in your PJ's as you watch Christmas movie re-runs!

I have now purchased an advent calendar which officially indicates the beginning of Christmas! I can't to open that first door, discover the mysteries it holds! I'm so happy that I purchased one too, I was debating it, but I really loved opening the calendar at home, it was this sneaky small way of celebrating the fabulousness of Christmas all through the month of December even when life gets a little crazy. 

I remember those numerous mornings in December, the three kids up in the morning, racing to get ready for school in the morning, but always making sure we opened the calendar AND making sure the right kid opened it. My childhood was wrapped in fairness attempts, dividing cookies EXACTLY in thirds, dividing the couch space exactly in half between my brother and I with threats of tadling if the boundaries were crossed, therefore it only makes sense that the opening of the advent calendar would be divided into threes, each day the next kid in line opening the next door. Some would think buying three, one for each kid, would be easier, but NO! As kids we grew up being forced to share, as much as it pained us! Thanks mom and dad, I appreciate it now. Anyways, that advent calendar was an important part of Christmas, so I am glad to have found one in Ottawa for my month of December.

Wow, my own Advent Calendar, what a concept! I will definitely miss arguing who gets to open the last door, who's turn was missed, and who got the shaft because their doors were smaller! This Monday is the 1st day of December, I have yet to find the perfect pedestal for my beautiful, colourful, sparkly calendar! Muh-ha-ha!!! My advent calendar fingers are tingling!!!

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