I've taken a new liking to Rooibos tea---a hearty, berry-ish rich tea, all on its own. I bought a tin of the bags last year---one of the Republic of Tea offerings, the can a step away from its cohorts on the Tea shelf at the store. Beside the frou-frou of the blossoms and the pink-embossed can tops and the fruity colors, this one is taken straight from a Warrior's shield, golden-orange with the incised cicatrix-interlock of a proved-man's cheek.
It's a bold brew, though the label touts Caffeine-Free with Vanilla Bean and a Hint of Cream. It tastes of sun and deep colors, with grapey notes and a lovely soft vanilla swallow.
I've had the can for quite a while now, all sealed tight in its little red/gold metal hermetics, and started to crave it again whilst reading three-in-a-row of the Precious Ramotswe series, which began with No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency, and continues on with her cases and adventures and life in Botswana. Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi are quite a team, a round, kind, soft-hearted woman with great intelligence and a gift for solving mysteries, and a spare, kind, sometimes sharp-tongued younger woman whose chief achievement in life is scoring a record 97 per cent in her course at Botswana Secretarial College.
They have solved problems, encountered corpses, snakes, crocodiles, marauding babboons, quite a few straying husbands, and one very mean ex-husband.
And every morning, they take a break for tea. Mma Makutsi makes two pots: A big pot of regular tea, for herself and the three gentlemen next door at Speedy Motors (one of whom is Mma Ramotswe's husband and the owner of the mechanics shop), and a smaller pot of redbush tea, just for Mma Ramotswe. It is the tea of her childhood, of her raising, of her heart, for it is solace and surcease and refreshment and meditation time all in one.
I KNOW it has to be the Rooibos tea that I've liked for quite some time, and I brew a pot of my own, now and then, and meditate and ponder.