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October 2016

Elevation Stories Part I - Daily Elevation


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Elevation Stories Part I - Daily Elevation

by Mike Baas


The day Wu De gifted a week's worth of Sun Moon Lake and a weathered bowl to me and my wife was indeed a fateful day. That very day, after our first ceremony, I balked at the idea that I would need tea in my already-packed life schedule. He said that someday down the road, I might find a use for this tool. Almost four years later, mired in endless tiresome child-rearing, house cleaning, soccer coaching ("American Dream" type stuff), you'd better believe I use this sharp, efficient, trustworthy Taiwanese tool on a regularly basis! Yet if the story ended at "I work really hard doing everyday stuff and I couldn't get by without the caffeine, man!" I would be remiss. Sun Moon Lake Elevation is much more than that. A Chajin needs his everyday teas - the old faithful standbys - and in all the genres, too. Sun Moon Lake is the best everyday red tea, and Elevation is quite possibly the best everyday tea period. That's because it always soberly delivers on the promise a living tea must keep: clean and smooth Qi that uplifts and inspires, every time.

First thing in the morning, it quickly jerks you back into the Matrix after a night's sleep and downloads the day's critical kung fu lesson, even on days where you'd rather take the blue pill and eat synthetic steak. Sun Moon Lake never grows tired of saving the day. Every time I have a late start to my day, procrastinating in making space for Her for one reason or another, if Sun Moon Lake is the choice that day, the first sip invariably makes me slap my head and exclaim "Doh! Why did I not heat the water and just get it done first thing? Why would I procrastinate on this?" She wants to help me. She wants to help my family. She wants to help others around me, too. I have given away nearly a trash bag of the stuff since I came across Her. If only there was enough for the whole world to share! Until then, those of us who are lucky enough to have Sun Moon Lake's energy in our system are bound to share Her bowl by bowl.

Sun Moon Lake is the only tea I drink that I don't make a fuss over. In that way, I take Her for granted more than a little bit. Because She is so forgiving, I sometimes lash out at Her with my abuses: overly boiled instant hot water in a chipped, sketchy ceramic mug from Bed Bath & Beyond; Her leaves chucked in, then letting Her sit too long on the countertop while I respond to the latest child crisis. When I finally get back to Her, I only have time for one more steeping, so I have to make it count. A modicum of attention is all that is required - a quick check in (one sip) for me to know that She's got my back, again. She doesn't mind giving, as long as I make the smallest effort to pay attention as the water hits my lips that first time. Of course, when October rolls around and Sun Moon Lake arrives by mail in the rice paper-lined tin, you better believe I give Her my all!

Elevation, clearly beloved by the Global Tea Hut ecosystem, doubled up with prayers, good vibrations and love, is a potent formula for sublimity. And when a dear friend like Elevation, whose vibration I am so familiar with at this point, is given the royal treatment of the Hut's preparation, I am bound to be let in on yet another one of Nature's deepest secrets, the kind that are oh-so-hard to put into words, the kind that must be lived. Now that I "know kung fu," maybe I'll put Her in the old Yixing this time, just to see if She's hiding something extra-special from me way down in there.