Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Darjeeling Tea!

While I was up in the hills near Darjeeling, I was able to visit some world famous tea estates! In addition to enjoying the palpable leaf-soaked-goodness with my mouth, the sights were excellent.


Unfortunately, I was disappointed to learn that there's really no smell from the tea plants. Bummer, dude.

The tea has been grown in these parts for hundreds of years, and virtually every bit of land is used -- even if it seems too steep to be used!
Again, like I said, it's pretty misty up in the hills. And steep. But they're determined to get the tea outta that land!

The tea pluckers are employed year round to pluck the freshest of new growths off the plants. They allow the tiny leaves to remain for next pass, pluck the extra large leaves & discard immediately on the ground, and pluck the "just right" buds for the baskets on their back.

Despite always appearing in rows, the pluckers individually seem to just float randomly between the unevenly spaced bushes. Even the bushes are not really arranged always -- sometimes they're in rows, sometimes in a "closest-packing" hexagonal format, and other times, just plopped wherever they'll fit. MMmmm!
(ps. Did anyone ever get any "Thurbo" tea? Must be loaded with caffeine, we all agreed, to warrant that powerful name! [It's pronounced "Turbo," with an aspirated T.])

4 comments:

  1. You think India has fog?? Nome had the last NINE flights cancelled b/c of it. We got two in this morning/afternoon and then it fell again and 153 diverted to ANC. Looks like it's sticking around for a couple more days. Happy Midnight Sun Festival :)

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  2. That's awesome, you guys get awesomely dense fog, northern lights, AND something called the Midnight Sun Festival! I'm envious!

    Hope that the diverted fights don't mean that Airport Pizza runs out of beer on tap!

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  3. Great photos, Holden. I'm still finding it hard to believe that all those tea plants have no smell. How can it be?!?

    In other news, I can't believe those tea pickers stole my idea - I've been carrying my laptop from a strap around my forehead for years...

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  4. I actually do remember you carrying your bag on your head -- and think you are entitled to some royalties from within the Anderson Clan! I'm pretty sure the Notre Dame community was introduced to this method by none other than the Big B.

    -HB

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