Posted by: Sarah | May 26, 2011

Thursday Tea Party: Dickens and Saffron

Welcome to my Thursday Tea party! 

The Book:

I have yet to receive my large shipment of new reading material. I understand that I live on the edge of the United States, but good heavens, two weeks for an online book order delivery seems an awfully long time—especially when one is greatly anticipating the contents. I hear my momma’s voice in my head, “Patience, Sarah, patience.” I’ve been battling the Patience Is A Virtue proverb since I came out of the womb. With my momma in mind, I went to my bookshelf and picked up the nonfiction book she gave me this past Christmas, The Man Who Invented Christmas by Les Standiford. I adore a good biography, especially those related to authors of classic literature. (This would be why I love the movies Becoming Jane, Miss Potter, Finding Neverland, etc.) So while pools are opening for the Memorial Day Weekend and the temperature is already close to 90° in El Paso, I’m reading about Charles Dickens and how the ‘sentimental’ book his publisher dismissed became one of the most beloved of all time. Pretty inspiring, no matter the season.

 The Tea:

I’m sipping a cup of Saffron Fusion Earl Grey by TajaTea. I find this an interesting and baffling tea. The Saffron boasts to contain over 90 health benefits and to have been used medicinally for over four millennia. “A miracle herb for vitality!” the label shouts with exclamation point to boot. This would be the interesting part. The box explains:

Recent study suggests: 30 milligrams of Saffron a day taken for six weeks has the same depression reducing properties as 20 milligrams of fluoxetine (Prozac) or paroxetine (Paxil).

A friend gave this to me… what was she trying to say exactly? I’ll feel free to assume she read the phrases “health benefits” and “promotes laughter and happiness” and thought it a good purchase for her tea-loving friend. We’ve now progressed into the baffling part.

Mostly, I’m puzzled by the taste. No matter what the box says, it tastes like straight-up Earl Grey. Bergamot is one of my favorite flavors. If you added it to Mississippi mud water, I’d drink it down. My best high school girlfriend and I used to go to Afternoon Tea at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel for our birthdays. We’d get caffeine soused on pots of Earl Grey and eat Grand Mariner-infused strawberries heaped with whipped cream.

So truthfully, I don’t know if my immense enjoyment of this cup is due to the saffron and its Prozac potency or the Earl Grey infusion. I’m sure some placebo effect is occurring. Whatever the case, I’m smiling as I drink.

Sarah’s Sipping Summary:

Under the book’s title it reads: “How Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol… revived our holiday spirits.” The Saffron Fusion Earl Grey professes to do the same, so I believe it fits my reading perfectly in claim, memorable flavor and its contradictions (Saffron vs. Earl Grey, summertime vs. holiday book).

 Cheers! Sarah

P.S. Remember to pop by some of my lovely friends’ Thursday Tea parties: Miss Beth Fish Reads and Miss Anastasia!



  1. I just love these posts every Thursday, Sarah. A Christmas Carol is one of my favorite stories, and I read it every December. I hadn’t heard of this nonfiction book. Now I must buy it! Thanks for bringing it to my attention.

    p.s. I reference Charles Dickens and his first trip to the United States in my novel All Different Kinds of Free. 🙂

  2. Thank you for bringing this book to my attention! And the tea, too. It sounds good – especially the promote happiness part. Who couldn’t use that? Alas, my tea of the moment is cold Snapple tea at work. It’s good but not the soothing book & tea experience of your tea party.

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