Chai.

Mug of chai

Sometimes strange coincidences lead to topics for blog posts and this is one of them.

On my post La Dolce Vita Grannymar has left a pithy comment – “Enjoy your chai!” That and another recent incident gave me the idea for this post.

The first real home that we set up after our marriage was way back in 1970 in Mumbai. For 14 months before that and after our marriage, we lived in paying guest accommodation and then I was on a prolonged survey tour for six months during which we met on two occasions at my inlaw’s places in Hyderabad and Banglore.

Once the home was set up, Urmeela sought advise from neighbours about shops, milk suppliers etc and the grocer close by recommended one brand of CTC dust tea to her which was to her taste, comparable to what she was used to at her mother’s place. Till just last week, that same brand of CTC dust tea has been in use at our home. On a couple of occasions when I was located in the South, where this brand was not available, I had to get it couriered from Pune. That was the level of loyalty to the brand.

Last week, our regular grocer was closed due to a state wide protest, and Ranjan went to a local super market chain to get some groceries to replenish the stock at home which was rapidly running down. I had told him all the things that needed to be sourced and he bought all of them except for the tea where he decided to be adventurous and brought a different brand of leaf tea for a change. He half expected me to blow a gasket and was quite pleasantly surprised when I did not and instead went on a nostalgia trip.

The brand of Red Label Leaf Tea that he bought was the tea that my mother used in her home and we grew up on that tea. Naturally, I was quite happy to get back to that tea and this morning the packet was opened and the first cups of that tea was made. My reaction? Absolute Bliss! A completely different taste and aroma to what we had been using for 43 years, but which took me back to my childhood.

So, Grannymar, I AM enjoying my chai. Thank you.

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10 Responses to Chai.

  1. Grannymar says:

    Good! I hope it is like this:

    http://youtu.be/HoI_d_gQ62g

  2. Here via Nick.

    Brand loyalties are powerful things. How funny that it took more than 4 decades to get back around to trying the tea of your childhood!
    Secret Agent Woman recently posted..Exploring the Massachusetts coast.

    • Nice to have you here SAW. Thank you.

      In the case of tea, being a natural product to offer consistenly the same taste again and again is a very difficult task and to retain customer loyalty is an amazing feat for anyone. Tea tasters who play such a crucial role in the process are among the highest paid professionals in the world.

  3. wisewebwoman says:

    Ah chai. There is an Indian restaurant in St. John’s near here that makes beautiful chai. I can never manage to make it that perfectly. Secrets?
    XO
    WWW
    wisewebwoman recently posted..Bang Bang

    • You flatter me by asking me for the secret! I think that the difference is in the brewing after the decoction comes to boil that makes the difference between Indian chai and the western tea.

  4. tammyj says:

    i think ranjan has a very sweet heart. this is not the first time he has made a wonderful choice about something!
    you wrote it so beautifully. i like the word bliss.
    tammyj recently posted..if i did

    • Ranjan is unique. He does totally unexpected things! Yes, people often remark that I use the words bliss and flourishing often in my conversation which more or less sums up my attitude to life.

  5. Cathy in NZ says:

    sounds like the “not found brand, at new place” was a blessing disguise…and I guess Ranjan hadn’t realised what memories would unfold…
    Cathy in NZ recently posted..Paper, Paint and “What-if?”

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