Huge thanks to everyone who entered our ‘Put the Kettle On’ competition – the three winners of this gorgeous book by Juanita Browne about the Irish love affair with tea, are after the jump!
Our first winner is Aisling Marron for her brave attempts to broker peace between the Barrys/Lyons factions. She’s Ireland’s very own Aung San Suu Tea (geddit?):
I’m staunchly Barry’s but I move in mixed circles and have made good friends with someone brought up in a Lyon’s house. It doesn’t usually come between us because I know never to discuss religion/politics/tea brands at a dinner party. After a few too many cups one night though we fell into the usual debate: which is better? A non-tea drinker friend (don’t know where we picked her up) suggested we….wait for it….make a “mixed pot”!! There was a stunned silence in the room. How had we never thought of it? Had anyone ever heard of it? Was it a sin?? We agreed to try it out. It tasted 50% ok.
Hannah Boylan‘s lovely story about the importance of tea in her relationship with her dad also scoops a prize:
As I grew up I watched my dad drink cup after cup of this elusive drink. If I was good when he got to the end of his cup, I was allowed dunk a rich tea biscuit into the dregs of his cup.
The older I got the more tea was left for me and I was even allowed a half a cup of my own tea every now and again. The day I was given my very own tea mug was a moment to cherish (it was a snow white cup – when you put tea inside the black mirror revealed Snow White’s picture) As someone who was always in a hurry to grow up, this was a momentous occasion.
The older I got the stronger my tea became and before I knew it I was allowed to make my own – and even more importantly I was trusted to make my dad a cup too!
Myself and my dad would sit in silence in the mornings allowing our first cup to wake us up – we pondered the wonders of the universe and the meaning of life (42 of course) over a strong cup or two if it was a tough question – I broke the news that I was leaving home with a cup of tea – I bought my dad his own special cup so he could have tea in my house when he visits (tea really does taste better in certain shaped cups) – Whenever I visit home alongside my hug is my cup of tea.
To me tea is a magical comforting drink that wraps me in love and brings some of the most wonderful memories of my life to the forefront of my mind. When I’m sad, lonely or feeling blue I make myself a cup and sit in the comfort of the loving warm glow that radiates from my heart.
Our final winner is Maccers, for a story of how tea has made her turn into her mother:
I have sadly turned into my mother, and every other auld one I mocked as a child.
I find myself saying things like “what, and they didn’t even offer you a cup of tea?!”, “put the kettle on, I’m gasping”, “I’d love a up of tea right now”, “Holidays are great but I do miss a cup of tea” and of course the big-deal breaker of every social occasion “will there be tea?”
I’m sitting here on my sixth cup of the day and I haven’t even had my lunch. I’m like some old crone in the corner, mocking all the Latte Cappuccino Frappacino swigging hipsters in my work from my high moral horse. Meanwhile I am possibly more tanked up on caffeine then all of them combined.
All of which has me parched for a cup of tae, off to make one now.