For many people, tomorrow is a holiday. It’s the summer solstice, or the first official day of summer. It is the longest day of the year, and is celebrated by many, along with the winter solstice and the equinoxes, as a time for reflection.
The summer solstice, in particular, is about everything you would associate with summer. It’s about celebrating the abundance that’s absolutely everywhere right now, from the birds waking you up in the morning, to the weeds pushing up through the sidewalk, to the children home from school. It’s a time for a general sense of gratefulness for all that you have, be it a summer vacation, or simply that the flowers are blooming. And it is time to look back over the last three months, and the last year, and see where your life has been going, and how you feel about it. A popular tradition for these holidays is to write yourself a letter to open on the next solstice.
If you don’t have a letter from last solstice, or have never noted them as holidays, there’s still nothing stopping you from having a quiet moment along with a cup of tea. Many people celebrate this holiday by waking up to watch the sunrise, though I must warn you, it will be the earliest sunrise of the year.
What tea should you drink in this particular moment of reflection? Well, frankly, the answer to that question is whatever you want, but there are a few which I think fit the mood especially well. A bright tisane like Bright Orange or Angel Falls Mist has the sort of lightheartedness that this holiday is all about. A more traditional green tea like Dragonwell or Gyokuro would capture the sense of reflectiveness. And a lighter, white tea, like Silver Needles or White Blueberry captures the sense of new beginnings.
A popular solstice tea tradition is to make sun tea. I don’t exactly endorse this one. Sun tea is made by leaving water out in the sun with tea bags in it for a period of several hours. This generally involves using bagged teas, which i have a whole list of problems with which I detail here. It also means leaving water, with an organic substance in it, outside, in the heat. It provides the perfect opportunity for bacteria and outright bugs to get into the tea, and then the heat and the tea itself gives that bacteria the perfect place to incubate. Please do not drink sun tea.
Do, however, enjoy a quiet cup of tea early tomorrow morning. It’s an excellent moment of peace and reflection, as is any cup of tea, at any time.