Cup of Tea

Whistling and singing at the top of its lungs, the tea kettle screams for attention as flames lick the bottom.  Steam streams out of the spout, desperate to escape and disappear into the surrounding air.  The water in the kettle fills with bubbles and they begin to tango together as the temperature rises.  Desperate to stop the shrieking melody echoing through the kitchen, she pulls a mug out of the cabinet.  Reaching into the drawer next to the stove, her fingers waltz along the boxes of tea.  Knowing each tea tells a story, evokes an emotion, she thinks carefully about her decision.

You see, each tea has its own personality, qualities that separate it from those around it.  Currently, the drawer’s resident wild-child is a violet-hued passionfruit tea that begs to be soaked in a cup of steaming water.  Steeping quickly, it turns the water a vibrant blend of magenta and violet as the other flavors become exposed.  Embracing the ideas of inclusion, peace of mind, and love for everyone, it is paired best with an adventure novel read in a window seat as rain pours down outside.  Given the sun shining outside and a recently finished tale of adventure, she moves on.  Dancing her fingers along the boxes, she pauses next at a collection of tea bags claiming rejuvenating powers and antioxidants.  Their bold logo and lengthy list of abilities boasts a know-it-all attitude and a pushy personality who wants to solve every problem on their own.  Feeling positive and ailment free, she continues onward.  The next box is in hues of inky blues and is decorated with the moon and stars.  In script, the words chamomile and sweet mint tiptoe across the packaging.  Whispering, it beckons to her, inviting her to take a sip which will then be followed by a peaceful nap curled up under a blanket so soft, it feels as though she is sleeping in a cloud.  No, not today, she decided. I’m not sleepy, so what’s next?  With two teas left in the drawer, there weren’t many options left.

The next tea is nestled in a simple white container with a bold type across the top.  Without boasting, it explains its ingredients in the simplest of terms.  Black tea.  A basic tea, still saturated with caffeine, stares out at her.  Knowing  the beauty in its simplicity, it understands its role as the motivator.  Often grabbed during hurried mornings as she dashes out the door afraid of being late, the tea kickstarts her mornings and provides solace within chaos.  Since she had survived the morning and was looking to have a relaxing afternoon, she moved on to the final tea in the drawer.  In a prim, pale blue box with a navy and gold emblem, similar to a royal seal, perches the Earl Grey tea.  Perfectly proper with a strong flavor, it uses nothing but the best ingredients and magnificent grammar.  Matched with with her favorite novel by Charlotte Bronte, it excels in afternoons on the worn leather couch, rereading old favorites, and nibbling on slices of fruit or chocolate chip cookies.  Reaching for a bag, she tore open the paper wrapping, and dropped the bag into the mug, which she promptly filled with boiling water.  Giving it time to steep, she pulled a book off the shelf, tugged her favorite blanket tighter around her, and drifted off into the plot of her favorite novel.

Spring Showers and Summer Storms

Raindrops free-fall from the clouds and slide off rooftops as they catapult to the ground.  Hurling themselves at the treetops and crashing into quivering blades of grass, they surf the breeze and leap into potholes.  As they coat windshields and cover umbrellas, they wash away layers of pollen.

Rain boots dart in and out of puddles. Raincoats become decorated with a smattering of droplets arranged into peculiar shapes that slide away as quickly as they came.  Raindrops quiver on the tips of hoods, only to drop down and careen down noses as they leap towards the ground.  Always reaching for the ground they streamline their descent.  A barrage of water throws itself to the ground.  Thunder rumbles in the distance as the rain falls faster, harder, excited at the prospect of a full blown storm.

The air comes alive as nature’s adrenaline kicks in, crackling with electricity, a shot of white light streaks across the city.  Not long after, thunder mumbles as it moves into town.  Trailing after the lightening, it grumbles and moans about always being left behind.  The rain feeds off the growing discontent,  lining up in sheets of water that sprint across the city.  The tension grows and this time the lightening strikes closer than before.  Watching it touch down, the thunder races to catch up, roaring with all of its might.  Windows rattle, wind howls outside, like a cat begging to come in out of the rain.

Drenched, people dash inside, the water pouring off of them in droves.  Umbrellas are shaken out, raincoats hung over the tub, boots stacked by the door and dripping hands reach for the linen closet.  As soaked clothes are tossed in the dryer, sweatpants are pulled over cold legs, and fluffy socks cover freezing toes.  Eyes peer out the window, staring at the once cracked earth now speckled with puddles.  Flowers drowning in the pooling water bow their heads, giving into the wind.  Smiling at each other, they laughed.  You’d never know it was the end of June and that the day before they had spent it poolside, catching rays.

As quickly as it had come, the lightening dashed out of town,  the thunder followed suit and soon, the rumbles faded out of earshot.  As the sun poked its head out from behind a cloud, the rain sprinted after the thunder, not wanting to be left behind.  The rays shone bright and a rainbow stretched across the sky.  Apart from the puddles beginning to dry, and the steam rising off of the pavement, the rainbow was the only evidence of the battle in the sky.

Sweats became shorts and raincoats were traded for t-shirts as rain boots were tugged back on and the people flooded out of the buildings, happy to enjoy the sunshine once again.  So even when you have a rough day, just remember there’s always a rainbow after the storm.

♥ Elle

Hope is the thing with feathers


“Hope” is the thing with feathers

That perches in the soul

And sings the tune without the words

And never stops  at all

And sweetest  in the Gale  is heard

And sore must be the storm

That could abash the little Bird

That kept so many warm

I’ve heard it in the chillest land

And on the strangest Sea

Yet never  in Extremity,

It asked a crumb of me.

~Emily Dickinson


 

Wanderlust

Drenched in jewels and coated in furs, she stepped one platform clad foot across the threshold.  The other foot followed as Claude, her poodle, stepped gingerly across the doorway.  Tucking her suitcase next to the door, she placed her matching carry-on on the floor and shed her numerous layers.  Once in just her cashmere sweater and delicately distressed jeans, she slid off her heels.  Glancing at her suitcase and then at her dog perched on the couch, she chose to join him on the sofa and reminisce about their trip.  She pulled off her necklaces, swept her hair into a bun, and curled under the blanket.  Snuggling with Claude, she tucked her toes under the blanket and began to recall all that they had done.

As visions of sun kissed beaches,  graffiti-clad cities, and fields-blanketed in flowers swirled through her mind, a feeling of wanderlust washed over her.  She loved to travel accompanied by her partner in crime, Claude, and take on new places and learn new languages.  As her memories flitted about, she recalled the taste of chocolate melting over her tongue.  She remembered the intoxicating blend of spices dancing across her tastebuds.  She longed for the feeling of biting into a fresh baguette as the crust crumbled in her mouth.  Opening her eyes to look at Claude, she noticed a worn copy of a cooking magazine sitting atop her coffee table.  Smiling, she realized that even at home she could appease her wanderlust just by stepping into the kitchen.  She would have much to learn, but with a few ingredients, a well-stocked spice rack, and a multitude of recipes, she could travel anywhere without ever having to even put on shoes.  Content with her “travel” plans for the future, she settled into the couch, and closed her eyes.  As she fell asleep, Claude rested his chin on her foot, happy to be home again.

Continue the Fight

     Live to fight another day echoed through her mind, bouncing off misplaced anecdotes and long-forgotten memories.  Tying her sneakers, she pulled the laces tight, tucked an earbud into each ear, and stepped out the door.  As she reached the sidewalk, she pulled on her hood and disappeared into the crowd.

The beautiful thing about the city, is the anonymity.  Stepping in time with the music, she let the city’s chaos wash over her.  As the music reached a crescendo, a smile tiptoed across her face and the sparkle returned to her eyes.  She began to notice the beauty around her.  She was reminded of the charming disarray that had lured her to the city in the first place.  She realized she had become a part of the bustling, humming, thriving collection of identities, lost souls, shadows, and stars that made up the city.  She could blend in or stand out, it was her choice, it was her time.

Not every fight will be this easy.  Not every bad day will be so simply solved.  And yet, looking out at the stars, neon lights, and apartment buildings smattered with lit windows, I have a found a home in this city.  I am ready to make my mark.  I am ready to live to fight another day.  Rolling over, she turned off her light, pulled up the covers, and let sleep whisk her away for the night.

 

Dreams


“Dreams don’t happen because we dream them… they happen because we do something about them”

~Leigh (Creator of Curly Girl Designs)