In October, the weather in Taiwan starts to turn perfect - neither too cold nor too hot. We spend more time drinking tea, and without any air-conditioning or fans. This means open windows and doors, and better Dragon Eye charcoal. It also means that we can begin to prepare better teas, like Wuyi Cliff Teas, aged Taiwanese oolongs, aged puerh and sometimes even some nice shou teas start to make an appearance.
When the weather is perfect for tea, a tea lover is in bliss. As your love for tea grows, however, you may also begin to have a curious relationship to the weather. Not only do we appreciate the rain for its relationship to plants and growth cycles, but also drinking a nice tea while it is pouring outside with the door and/or windows open is one of the greatest joys a Chajin can know. The sound and smell compliment the tea so wonderfully, and there is a magical charm in a warm and cozy bowl of tea indoors when it is cold and rainy outside. Such weather adds a glow to shelter, something we so often take for granted, as Tea also teaches us to love the ordinary.
We have a great tea in store for you. It is a very unique one, that will be a surprising and joyful way to bring in the change into cooler autumn winds. This amazing tea brings a lot of energy with it and is a powerful reminder of the connections and friendships this community has brought into our life, since its donor is one of the members sitting here in this circle sharing tea with us all month after month.
Many of you have admired our doctor bag, in which the center bowls travel the earth, spreading tea medicine. As this global community grows, there is a need to stop every now and then to celebrate just how global it is! These envelopes are reaching people in more than thirty countries! That is stunning, indeed. It is amazing to have such a strong fellowship of people committed to sustainably-grown tea, and with an approach towards tea that is similar to ours: primarily as plant medicine and a means of self-cultivation. And the community is growing and connecting in ways we could never have imagined when we began this project. Very soon, we will have some big announcements about new ways we hope to connect you all!
In the meantime, we realized that the "Voices from the Hut" section of these magazines is one of the most requested and talked about aspects of receiving Global Tea Hut. In my travels, I find that people have read those articles more often than others (with the exception of the Tea of the Month article, which is, of course, the most widely read). That makes sense, especially since one of the most rewarding parts of receiving Global Tea Hut is the feeling of connection to a community, and one that you want to get to know. It seemed fitting, then, to devote a whole magazine to "Voices from the Hut". We asked several friends around the world to write about anything that inspires them locally - tea culture, community, Global Tea Hut - anything! We wanted to hear from you all. We hope you enjoy reading a bit more of what others in this worldwide gathering are doing, and take some of them up on their invitations to go share tea.
Let this issue itself also stand as an invitation to all writers, poets, artists or dreamers out there: send us your work. We want to hear about your experience, whether as novice or expert, beginner or master-craftsman. The more we all contribute to this experience, and connecting through it, the more rewarding it will be! As we mark more new and exciting changes in Global Tea Hut - traveling more, exposing you to more and rarer teas, more authors, etc. - amongst all this growth, let us all include more participation and connection to each other! As the old Chinese saying goes, "Through tea make friends!"