Fourth tea ceremony of 2020: Today’s temae, chabako kasumi datte, tea box “mist” presentation was at Sunrise Landing Motel, owned and operated by a fabulous couple I have know since they were children. They are the kindest, most thoughtful and gentle people, who now have a home and young family of their own filled with love and warmth and ease.
Some endearing aspects of today’s ceremony: the interactions between parents and children, the meandering pets, the playdough.
I had chosen the chabako for this morning’s ceremony because I thought it would hold the children’s attention as they watched while each piece of teaware is removed from the box and placed in knolling fashion on the single board and lid. The tea sweets were ohigashi. The tea, Nara matcha. The Japanese print, a crane family and tortoise family, perfect for today. The flowers, my winter fall back, white pine, alstromeria, and a wild berry that had accidentally been forced into budding white flowers, surprise!
As it turned out, this temae was a good choice. The baby joined us for ceremony. She watched with intense curiousity and anticipation. The rhythm of the ceremony was comfortably paced by the flow of her excitement, especially over the tea sweets.
After the ceremony, we talked about the role of tea in zen practice and as support for daily awareness of being present. It was a joy to be chatting about this topic while we staged some photos, cleaned up from tea ceremony and brought out the playdough. It all felt so natural and easy. Clearly this attitude of ease is their way of life.
Rarely do I take photos while doing tea. I have to depend on someone else to do that. Or what more often happens, we are totally present for tea; I clean up; then think, “Ooo, should have taken photos. Oh, well.” If you saw my IG post, you might have noticed how good the photos for ceremony #4 look. Well, that is because I did not take most of them. So much big thanks to the Messy Minimalist, who took photos and even some video.
I was gifted in so many ways through this time spent together for tea – I just love this family!