12 July 2009


at first the bubbles danced frantically in the water before slowly waltzing their way onto the surface. they melted into each other, forming the steam that raised up and kissed me gently on my face when i leaned in to make sure that the temperature was right.

almost there, i told myself. give it just another minute or two.

i opened the lid of the box carefully and scooped out two tablespoonful of tea leaves. very gracefully i sifted dried leaves into the hot waters below and watched as they bled throughout the water, staining it with a slow dark colour.

my hand found its way into the little plastic box full of spices and fished out bits of cinnamon, cloves, peppercorns and cardamoms. i broke the sticks of cinnamon, the aroma bursting from its wooden texture. the smell of cardamom, pepper and cloves stung my nose as i bruised them with the end of my knife. the bittersweet essence of spices filled my lungs as i inhaled, intoxicating me with its divine fragrance. i closed my eyes and felt with my fingers, taking only an amount of all the ingredients as my heart sees fit.

very delicately i poured the spices into the pot of cooking tea and watched as the flavours blended into each other, adding a unique intensity to the dark beverage. i gracefully stirred everything so the taste would stay together. the incense calmly wafted into the air, filling the whole kitchen with its strong aroma.

i took out the warm milk that was heating in the microwave and smoothly poured the tea into it. a small smile formed on my lips as i watched the dark colour of the tea mix with the pure whiteness of the milk, creating a swirl of ying and yang as they formed a smooth milky brown. i pulled the tea in the cups until i ended up with a nicely mixed beverage with light froth bubbles on its surface.

finally i brought the cup to my lips and very carefully i sipped it. the silky taste teased the tastebuds on my tongue before making its was down my throat. i could feel myself smile and glow as the familiar flavours burst in my mouth.

for that fraction of a second my memories brought me back to the day when i stood in her kitchen and witnessed the beauty of making masala chai. she made it all seem so simple, but for every step that she took to make the tea she made it with her heart and soul.

maybe that's why people call it Soul Food.

i lovingly wrapped my hands around the warm cup and made my way to the living room. i placed the movie that i have just recently bought into the CD player and sat myself down with my cup of comfort. the familiar scenes came to life, lines and lines of breath-taking poetry bringing me back to the first time when i watched the movie and fell in love with it

drinking masala chai and watching Shakespeare in Love once in a breezy afternoon.

that's what i call love and comfort.

it feels good to be home. : )

1 spilled milk:

tiff pan said...

you never cease to amaze me with your beautiful prose.: ) so heartfelt and honest. love it to bits. i'll let you read my story once it's finished. you've read a few pages of it already right? i have 6 pages so far.