Coffee or tea…What is the favorite beverage in the UK…a “cuppa” what?…

The driveway from our house to the narrow road.

Fascinating Fact of the Day About St. Teath, Cornwall*:

From this site: “The village sports an old clock tower in the centre near the church. It dates back to 1920 and was erected in memory of those who lost their lives in the First World War. The clock was built from Delabole slate donated by the quarry and constructed by volunteers to a plan by local mine manager, Mr. Oswald Swete. The four clock faces are driven by a weight powered mechanism which needs ‘rewinding’ every 6 days. The village has an interesting history. St Teath (from whom this village acquired its name) came over from Wales, with her sisters, to this area of Cornwall to bring Christianity to those living here. Since then the village has seen much change with the rise and fall of both mining and the railway. There is plenty of evidence of both around the area.  The oldest part of the village surrounds the village square – the focal point of the annual summer carnival, Remembrance day, Christmas lights and New Year Celebrations.”
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We often assume that the people of the United Kingdom are avid tea drinkers and, although they’ve heartily adopted coffee consumption, making it more prevalent than tea, they are still big tea drinkers.

At this site, there’s a ticker running illustrating how many cups of tea are consumed in the UK each day.  It’s shocking to see how fast the ticker runs into the millions of cups each day.  
Storage building on the farm.
Coffee consumption has grown in the UK over the years.  Here’s an article from described here:

“Stereotypes suggest that Brits favour a builder’s brew over any other beverage but new figures released by the British Coffee Association (BCA) tell a different story.

Reliant on the caffeine spike a morning brew offers to face the day ahead, the BCA has revealed that the UK’s coffee consumption has soared to 95 million cups a day in 2018, up from 70 million in 2008. That’s an increase of 25 million over the last 10 years.”

The exact stats on coffee versus tea consumption in the UK is confusing and elusive.  Some say coffee is more prevalent while others claim tea is the preferred beverage of choice.

Pygmy goats checking me out.  Next sunny day, Lorraine will take me out to meet them inside the fences.  Photos will follow.
“Part of the research, conducted by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR), included a survey of 2,000 adults in the UK It found that nearly a third of those surveyed said they didn’t drink coffee at all, while at the other end of the scale six percent admitted to drinking six cups or more a day, with the average person consuming around two cups a day.

“Interestingly, it also revealed that 65 percent of coffee is drunk at home, 25 percent at work or while studying, and the rest is consumed in shops, bars, and restaurants. “In the last decade we’ve gone from a country of tea-sippers who enjoy the occasional instant coffee, to a nation of seasoned coffee connoisseurs exploring a large variety of roast and ground blends,” said Chris Stemman, Executive Director of the BCA.”
Pretty house in Michaelstow.
In our experience while in the frequent presence of Brits over the years of world travel, we’ve seen tea as the preferred beverage.  But then, many of our British friends are regular coffee drinkers.  So, who’s to say they haven’t adopted the passion for coffee drinking so common in the US and many other countries throughout the world?

Tea’s illustrious influence in the UK has led to a variety of teas from around the world but there are certain teas the British favor.  Favorite teas include: 

Most Popular Type of Tea in England
  • Black Tea. Black Tea, of course, tops the list, mostly taken with milk, mostly in tea bag form
  • Earl Grey. Earl Grey was believed to be named after a gift of tea from China was presented to the then UK Prime Minister Charles Grey in 1830
  • Green tea
  • Herbal teas
  • Oolong
  • Others


Cornfield in the neighborhood.
Surprisingly, we don’t see a wide variety of teas at the supermarkets, not nearly as many as I’d seen in the US many moons ago.  As for coffee, many Brits drink instant coffee.

Over the past seven months since I had open heart surgery I’ve avoided drinking coffee.  I found the caffeine seemed to make my heart race.  Instead, I’ve been drinking one cup of green tea (includes caffeine) each morning, followed by herbal teas later in the day.  I’ve yet to find a herbal tea that I love.

But, then again I was always both a tea and coffee drinker starting with coffee in the morning and having tea in the afternoon, caffeine never seeming to be an issue.  Tom started drinking coffee only since 2004.  He now drinks it without sugar and uses coconut cream instead of milk or cream.
Old building/barn converted to a house with solar panels.
Speaking of milk, here’s a morsel:
“The research celebrates Britain as a nation of tea drinkers, with a few surprising results like almost one in five putting the milk in first,” said Emma Stanbury from Arla B.O.B milk which commissioned the study. “And with more than fifty shades of tea, everyone’s favourite is a little different.”

When we grocery shopped a few days ago I decided to try something I’d never consider in the past…make instant caffeine-free coffee adding “double cream.”  Much to my surprise, it tastes delicious and I believe this will be my new morning beverage.  I’m very enthused being able to have coffee in the mornings when Tom’s coffee always smells so good.

Later in the day, I’ll have a few cups of green tea including each day around 4 pm, tea time minus the biscuits.  It’s not quite “high tea” but definitely a treat at that time of day, now that we’re no longer doing “happy hour.” 

This morning, we took on an amazing drive in the area and came across some fantastic sites and a “people” experience we can’t wait to share tomorrow with many photos.  Please check back. 
 
Enjoy your Sunday!  Have a “cuppa” as the British say!
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Photo from one year ago today, September 15, 2018:
This is the same family with seven chicks we’d seen a few months ago. For more photos, please click here.

Giving up habits..Wean me slowly!…

Bye, bye tea!

“They,” say it takes three weeks to break a habit. Yes, we still have six months and fourteen days until we leave for our adventure, but I feel compelled to start weaning myself off of some of my habits and routines. Most likely, Tom will bring his habits with us! 

We often chuckle over our routines and habits, as written in the first entry in this blog on March 14, 2012, describing in painstaking detail how we jointly manage to change clocks twice a year for daylight savings. That bi-annual event is but the tip of the iceberg!

Creatures of habit, we are! As we anticipate the homes we will occupy in the countries we will visit, many of our familiar and comforting routines will be tossed aside. Never staying long enough in any location to firmly establish new routines, we will strive to find ways to feel at ease and comfortable in someone else’s space.

The master bath in our home has a sink with brass fixtures, a bit outdated, but still attractive and befitting our lodge-like home on a lake here in Minnesota. The faucet in the pedestal sink drips. Over the years we’ve had several plumbers looking at it, telling us that the faucet cannot be repaired and must be replaced with a more current design. It still looks quite nice.

The faucet leaks when not shut off tightly (mostly by me). It drips onto the brass ring and stopper at the drain. This annoys me. Two to three times a day, I get out the Barkeeper’s Friend with a little sponge kept at the bottom of the closet (have to bend over each time), wet the sponge, sprinkle the Barkeepers, and scrub the drain until it sparkles, drying off every last drop of water with a piece of toilet paper. 

Good riddance!

Throwing the t.p. in the toilet, I consider flushing it but don’t. Why waste water?  Why don’t I throw it in the little plastic bag inside the little decorative brash trimmed, off-white porcelain trash can? Simple, I don’t want to have to feel compelled to empty the trash! (Now you can see why the details of planning this extended many years life of world travel, make me feel right at home as if you didn’t already know)! Two or three times a day, I do this! Twenty-six years!!!

Will I immediately go to a grocery store upon arriving in Belize, buy a Barkeeper’s Friend equivalent, and a small scrubby sponge to run back to our little ocean side house and start scrubbing the sparkly stainless steel drain two to three times a day? I don’t think so. Some habits will die on their own. Good riddance!  

However, other habits will be harder to break. This morning, as usual (another habit) I awaken at 5:30 am. I get up, hit the loo (Ha! Look, I am already getting more familiar with foreign expressions!), brush my teeth, wash my face and put in my contacts in order to see and go back to bed to look at my phone, an AndroidX loaded with 100’s of apps, but only a few I habitually use: Gmail, Facebook, Pulse, and Amazon Kindle Free App (containing my latest reading obsession).  

This morning I realized that this may not be possible once we are no longer on US soil. Yes, we will have access to the Internet on our laptops, many times provided as wireless broadband by the property owners. During these periods, we will be unable to use the Internet on our phones unless we are willing to pay outrageous fees. 

When I calculated the possible fees, it would be about $5000 a month for playing with our phones, considering our current megabyte usage, utilizing our current service provider! No thank you! (We will get into this in more depth on this topic as we move along here and discuss XCOMGLOBAL and SIM card options). Thus, another habit to break! Playing with our phones! Yikes!

We have three flat-screen TV’s as do many Americans, one in the living room, one in the bedroom, and one in the kitchen. From the moment we are up and about, until going to bed, the TV is on in the background, quietly or off when talking or loudly when watching due to Tom’s hearing loss (42 years on the railroad).  

Although recently distracted with our laptops; Tom with ancestry, me with travel stuff, we usually spend most evenings together watching shows we programmed during the week. This “getting outside your head” form of entertainment is a delightful respite from the stresses of everyday life.   

Most of the vacation rentals will have tiny hard to watch old TVs with shows in foreign languages. No more piling up our plates with tasty homemade dinners to sit and watch yet another episode of “Downton Abbey”, “Dexter” or one of our favorite mindless, sinfully deliciously reality shows.  

Guess we’ll watch TV on our computers when we have Internet access or watch the many movies we plan to download to a yet-to-be-purchased portable four terabyte external hard drive.  

Here’s another habit, hard to break. Every afternoon at 4:00 PM, I brew tea, one cup at a time, at exactly the correct temperature, with precisely the same pot, for exactly three minutes, with a certain strainer, a special timer, a sterling silver spoon, in a pale green cup, with 3 drops of liquid Stevia, my own version of Happy Hour.  
I only like one type of tea, Pouchong, a hard to find, buy-online-only tea grown in the spring in Taiwan. I have tried numerous other teas to no avail. Oh, no! The bag of tea, the strainer, the cup, the timer, the Splenda, the pot, the spoon all weigh 2.7 pounds which equals 3.85% of our allowable luggage when we fly. Bye, bye tea!