Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Matcha is not delicious?!

A computer lab becomes a wonderful tea room.
The place where I went the other day was a local elementary school. I wore kimono and headed to their computer room. Why? The school has a tea ceremony every year. Their computer room becomes a nice tea room on that day. My tea teacher is the one who organizes the ceremony. A few students from our tea school helps the gathering. This year, I got a chance to be a part of it. We had several rounds of ceremony and I’m happy that I had chances to perform making tea in three sessions. In the ceremony, kids were looking at each other silently with their wistful eyes. One tried to sit properly when a bowl of tea was brought in front of one. It is the nicest computer room that I have ever been to. 

 Yucky matcha
After the ceremony, a boy was asked how he liked the tea. He said “It is yucky!”. Hahaha! I like that kids are so honest. It’s probably true that the taste of matcha was not for him. I have heard that “Kids don’t like bitter and sour taste. Humans instinctively feel bitter and sour flavors unpleasant, because those taste are often naturally found in toxic food. It’s an innate reaction for self-preservation. As you get older and the sense of taste gets matured, you can savor the bitter and sour taste.”  So, you need a little more time and experience to enjoy matcha, boy!

Locked tea bowls
Some potters donated their tea bowls to the elementary school. Our town is well known for ceramic production and we have many great potters. Some of the potteries are worth as much as a car. The donated items are stored in the locked shelf in the principal’s office always. It’s wasted. That is why they stared having a tea ceremony once a year and give an opportunity for kids to appreciate the treasures of the town. I think it is a wonderful approach and I hope some other schools try it, too. Even though, the kid didn’t like the taste of matcha, he seemed very excited and enjoyed the special event. Drinking yucky tea from a super expensive bowl will definitely be an unforgettable experience for him.