On Monday, I had a wonderful surprise on several fronts! First, my friends Bob and Ashly came by with their four boys—Jackson, Jefferson, Harrison and Hamilton—to trick-or-treat at the office. I was in their wedding years ago, and Ashly is one of my closest friends and also one of the only two women I know who can be relied on for power shopping. But more important, Bob has just finished his second tour of duty in Iraq and has arrived safely home! If that's not something to be thankful for this month, I don't know what is! Because Bob was away when Son #4 was born, I had the happy opportunity of being present for that sweet child's birth.
Anyway, imagine how touched I was when Bob said he wanted to thank *me* for my support with a gift he picked up while abroad. It was this charming lunchbox containing Al-Otuor Earl Grey Tea! Bob started to apologize for it not being "very Victorian or anything," and I said, "Are you kidding? This is even better because this is something I've never had before!" He said, "See Ashly, I told you she'd like it." Indeed I do!
And inside are not just a few packets of tea but two great big ole packages of loose leaf tea!
I was very carefully opening the top of the bag so it wouldn't explode on me (haven't we all done THAT before), and I laughed when I looked inside. Another bag! Smart!
The black tea had a nice fresh bergamot scent, and the flavor is terrific, one I'd rank right up there with Twinings Earl Grey. I brewed one heaping teaspoonful and let it steep for just a few minutes, and the tea was perfect! Bold but not too bold, and no astringency at all. This will be my go-to tea for a while (one bag for home, one for the office). Every time I drink it I'll think of my thoughtful soldier friend—and how grateful I am he's back in the U.S. of A.!