For all the first 22 years of my life, I had never ever tasted chai. Yes! As much as you may want to widen your eyes, that’s the truth of my life. Coffee sometimes, yes, but anything to do with tea sent my nose scrunching while the others around me scowled in disbelief.
Well! There’s some background to this aversion to tea. As per my mom I belong to that scarce species of kids who loved milk. Infact both us sisters would have a long standing face-off, inspecting two glasses on the table to claim the one with more milk (even though my mom made sure to give us the same amount to the best of her ability). Strangely enough, even during my teens, I never felt the need to switch to tea. I was more than happy with my milk indulgences with half a dozen flavors that my mom stocked the kitchen with.
But fast forward life to the time when I moved out of home into my first job and milk became a luxury (no! not because I couldn’t afford it, but because I had no way of storing it in my hostel room. As luxurious as the hostel rooms at Infosys Mysore campus were, they did not provide fridge) And that was the time I made the big switch to coffee. And boy! What a switch it was. I became a serial coffee drinker. My gang at work often joked that I am a drunkard on coffee. Soon the side effects began to show in the form of increased acidity, dehydration and even a skin allergy that the doctor confirmed was casued due to excessive intake of coffee. I was personally also concerned with the addiction part of it. I detest addiction of any kind (be it television, music or food. The only addiction I have allowed myself is reading, that’s it) Thus came to an end, my affair with Coffee.
The worst part of not having tea or coffee was that in a group on a Chai break, I had to sit idle dwindling my thumbs while rest of the others slurpped in their Chai/ Coffee with the strangest of sounds and antics (remember that guy in your group, who insisted in pouring tea in the saucer before putting it into your mouth?)
I felt left out… I felt hurt…!
The other popular option then was black tea ( or popularly known as Liquor Tea) . But that didn’t entice me much. The kadak flavor that is the reason for a Chai’s popularity is something that I could never get myself to appreciate. My palette refused to accept it, or can I say that my treacherous palette conspired just so that I could not belong. I continued to live this lonely life amidst the crowd of tea lovers.
Fast forward life to the time when I got married. Oh Sorry! Let me apprise you of another very important fact before that. My husband, who happens to be my batch-mate during MBA and boyfriend is an out-an-out tea lover. So much so that, when I would buy a tea for me only to be able to dip, dunk and eat my favorite Parle-G’s, he didn’t mind me passing on the remaining Chai to him. He was a happy soul for that extra sip of tea. That was then, when we were in the throes of passion and found excitement in things as mundane as sharing a canteen ki cutting. But after marriage, reality dawned when we had the most harrowing time of our lives. Why? Just because I was unable to prepare tea to his taste.
I had to soon find a solution, because those disappointed looks that the Mr. gave every morning had begun to make me feel incompetent. Oh! Please don’t think that I was upset about not being able to make my Mr. happy. That’s alright by me. You can’t make everyone or anyone happy all the time. Trying to do that is the perfect recipe to your unhappiness. But the very sensitive me was upset about the chortling sounds that my man made while I ranted about why he couldn’t make his tea on his own. Please understand my agony when I tell you that a Chai to his taste remains a prick in our relationship even after 9 years of marriage.
The solution to my problems dawned on me one summer, when I visited my parents’ place. My fitness and health freak father (who walks atleast 7 km everyday) had abruptly given up on Chai and switched to Green Tea. That was the first time I realised that we could have green tea at home too. I mean until now I was oblivious of the fact that Green Tea was available in the market over the counters (and not only in the waiting lounges of Mainland China). And since then there has been no looking back. With all its health benefits, Green Tea has become a favorite in our household. To add to my pleasure, the Vaccum Insulated Green Tea Detox Bottle by Instacuppa has become a constant companion while I am on the move.
Some definitive benefits that I have experienced ever since I started having Green tea are –
- Improved Metabolism and Weight Loss – After both my pregnancies, Green Tea was a major reason why I went back to my pre-pregnancy weight within six months of delivery
- Skin benefits (as it contains anti-oxidants) – I have a dull skin as such, but with time and green tea, the skin quality has improved.
- It helps improve brain function better – I have surely experienced better concentration and be able to churn out one blog post after another even though I get time to write only in the middle of the nights.
Ofcourse the world wide web is filled with numerous other proven benefits of consuming Green Tea, but for now I can vouch for these. That besides the fact that the subtle and understated taste of Green tea is perfect for someone like me who has a disliking for pungent smells and flavors (except for incase of chocolates, or may be occasionally the mocktails that use bitters).
So here was a candid account of my trysts with Tea and how Green Tea has come to rescue my relationship with my husband before it soured over a Chai.
Do share your stories of tea / coffee love and tell us how Chai comprises a significant part of your life.
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