A cup of tea was something which frequently punctuated the day when I was growing up on the farm.
Mum and Dad began the day with a cuppa. They had set cups and saucers: blue for Dad and pink for Mum. Cups of tea ended each meal through the day. The lunch time cuppa was set for the broadcast time of “Blue Hills.”
I would always have one as soon as I got off the school bus in the afternoon, along with a rock bun, buttered coffee scroll or jubilee cake. I still love hearty country style baking.
Back then, there were only two choices in television stations: the ABC or SES 8. There was scheduled a mid-evening weather check on SES 8 at around 9 p.m. It was sponsored by Bill Barrows Autos. The Neagle clan thought the name Bill Barrows should have been Will Barrows – it would have made for so much for fun. Anyway, as the night drew toward 9 p.m., we would be anticipating this weather check because the last person to say “Will Barrows” when it appeared had to make supper.
CWA or Red Cross meetings in the Wrattonbully Hall always involved a cup of tea and afternoon tea. Table tennis on a Friday night at the Joanna Hall would also include supper as each woman would have “brought a plate.” The slow combustion stove would be lit when the first person arrived to ensure that the kettle could be boiled.
Tea was made in a pot. The pot was warmed with hot water before the tea was made. It was stirred and then a tea cosy was placed over the pot. Cups and saucers were set out with matching milk and sugar sets. This was not a time of mugs, teabags and the plastic two litre bottle from the fridge.
It is not just the Japanese who have had traditional tea ceremonies.