If we were having coffee…wait, since when we are having coffee? Have we changed that much? Oh, a misunderstanding you say. Good, I was shocked a bit to hear that you have begun drinking coffee. Ok then, we are having tea as usual.
If we were having tea means that it is Friday early evening and you have come to my house. What tea shall we drink? I have Assam for philosophy, Ceylon for art, Darjeeling for small talk, Earl Grey for a personal conversation…alright,alright I will stop now. Yes, I am still a 5 o’clock tea drinker. You pick Earl Grey tea. I bring the beautiful bone china you used to admire so much.
Tell me, how have you been these years? Did you miss our Friday “tea ceremony”? I remember you were trying to convert me to become an AC/DC fan. And I tried to make out of you a classic music aficionado. Our common denominator was the modern Russian pop music.
The tea is ready. I pour the amber liquid into the almost transparent cups. For a moment, we are silent admiring the fusion beauty between tea and bone china.
Then you begin to talk. At first, the conversation is general – about your work, family, the latest song on youtube. I listen and enjoy every moment. You ask me about myself even though you know I prefer to listen than to talk about myself. I answer briefly that nothing new is in my life. You sense that I am not ready to discuss Life.
As the time passes we feel more and more comfortable with each other. The intimate atmosphere of the past years is back. Now we feel more comfortable to talk about ourselves. We slowly sip our tea. We inhale the smell of bergamot. Then you mention your health. You know I am concerned about your incurable disease. I am glad to hear that you are feeling fine, that the diet you created yourself works and that you enjoy life. I make a mental note to follow more often your philosophy of life. Sometimes I am taking myself too seriously.
Now is my turn to share my joys and pains. I tell you about the impossibility to find a job without good knowledge of German. I tell you about my daily struggles with my child. I tell you about the book I read by a Russian author. You are curious to see it. I hand it to you and you dive into it.
We talk and talk and talk. Outside the sun is going down. This time, no one notices it. We are deep into conversation. The book leads to a sidetrack speech from you about good and bad music, about boring people and places. This reminds me of a person I met the previous week about whom I want to tell you. That leads to another dialog about the food habits of some people. At that point, we exchange recipes and discuss the quality of vegetables in different countries. The last brings us to sharing stories about our lives in various parts of the world. Funny stories, sad stories, untold stories…
Our cups are empty, the teapot also. At this time, we are discussing some silly cartoon we have seen. We wonder how did we come to this topic. It doesn’t matter. We contentedly finish the last drops of tea. It is time for you to go.
You say a joke. I smile. We say good – bye. Until the next Friday when we both can be free for tea.