Lessons from China

With the close of the Olympics I must admit that there were some things that got under my skin, like the 16 year-old gymnast (air quotes here) that was probably about 11.  Also, some of the vestiges of a corrupt government which played out in a couple of ways (think little girl singing at the opening ceremonies).

But at the same time I found myself staring in unbelief at the stunning opening ceremonies. So some of the spectacle was militant and almost scary?  The entertainment value was beyond anything I have seen before, and so I suspended any suspicion for those couple of hours.  If there hadn't been a live audience I might have guessed there were CGIs being used to replicate the performers.  It was simply unreal.

In one of the segments that ran on the Today show last week, the hosts had a Chinese woman on to demonstrate how to properly drink tea.  I will admit that if it had been a British guest I might have done a bit of eye-rolling, having lived there for 4 months and experienced their sense of ritual, which really translates into such strict rule-keeping that people sometimes get forgotten as rules must be obeyed.  But I digress...  In this Chinese tea drinking there are three steps to be followed.  First comes a short drink, to taste.  Second a longer one, to drink.  And third, the longest drink of all, to remember.  

I liked this idea of tasting, drinking, and remembering.  It was beautifully demonstrated and a wonderful metaphor for life.  Sometimes in life these three steps might be spread out over the course of years.  It can be analogous to getting older and wiser.  It can relate to developing relationships.  I just hope that in whatever way I choose to taste, drink, and remember, that I will leave a little room in the cup for unexpected moments.


Juliana | August 24, 2008 at 8:56 PM

Thanks for the reminder that we don't have to gulp down life. We can sip... we can enjoy... then we can take time to make memories for later.

I think I have a "jump in and drown" approach to life too often!

Kazzy | August 24, 2008 at 9:40 PM

Me too! But in my old age I am trying to perfect the art of pondering, or at least I am attempting it!

charrette | August 25, 2008 at 3:08 PM

I LOVE turning that into a metaphor for life...Taste, drink, and remember. Very nice.

Connie | August 25, 2008 at 9:57 PM

I love it when I can actually taste, drink and remember to enjoy life. But at times I find that I have been thrown into the middle of the tea. I doggy paddle around to find a way out before I drown then I'm grateful when the ordeal is over. It's not too bad unless the tea is really hot!
Karen, I love your insight. Pardon my levity.

Anonymous | August 26, 2008 at 3:43 AM

Great post. Very thought-provoking.

Mrs4444 | August 26, 2008 at 3:26 PM

That's a beautiful philosophy; it's cool that you caught that show....

Jo Beaufoix | August 27, 2008 at 2:49 AM

Hee hee, sip and enjoy sounds good to me. And when you came over here you didn't visit my Gran did you? Now her and her tea, she still used tea leaves and a strainer and everything. I promise most of us Brits just dunk a teabag and enjoy. :D

And thanks for your comment on my post at the annex. I really appreciate it. Have a fab day. :D