Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Time for Tea

Over here in Netherfield, we tend to enjoy our teas.

Hence our increasingly established tea parties timed to coincide with various incidental social occasions or celebrations, such as the recent fete we had to celebrate both Easter - and Vasakhi as a nod to our Punjabi tenant.

Though we initially began with casual dinner parties, soon we found it so much easier to cater for teas instead with portable finger foods, little sandwiches and snacks - certainly makes it so much easier to move around and mingle with the crowd. Far less preparation and even less cleaning up after as well.

In the late afternoons, the sweltering tropical heat here becomes just a tad more tolerable and the persistent blitzkrieg of mosquitoes that attack by evening have yet to make an appearance. And let's face it, somehow dainty china teacups and cucumber sandwiches lends itself to a touch of formality in such events. After all it's just plain wrong to attend an old-fashioned tea party dressed in ratty cut-offs and flip flops so that gives us all the more reason to dress up.

Paul : Are those your *cough* friends? The ones in ratty tank tops and shorts?
Kat : I thought they were on your list!
Paul : Must be Felix's motley crew.

However despite the fact that I always note the time for the tea party clearly on the invitation, everyone here seems to find afternoon teas wildly avant garde since they all frequently ask the same exact thing!

Friend : So when should we come for the afternoon tea?
Paul : Well it's an afternoon tea.
Friend : You mean at 7 pm?
Paul : What? You have tea at 7 pm? It's at 4 pm.
Friend : OMG It's already five minutes past that.
Paul : Yeah the guests have arrived.
Friend : Better get dressed!
Paul : No crappy tees.

Seriously. Afternoon tea? Need you even ask the time?

Apparently they all do. Always there is a near frenzied confusion just minutes before teatime as our roster of guests all ring up for the time. Didn't the Brooke family ever schedule tea parties during their tenure here? If he knew this, my shockingly traditional grandfather who insisted on having tea brought up to his room every day at 4 would have been appalled.

Wonder what would happen if I scheduled a brunch. 


Janvier said...

Perhaps if you say, "teh petang," (at the risk of giving the impression that kuih lapis, karipap and sandwic telur are on the menu), they'll know that it's 4pm!

savante said...

Well teh petang is tea, isn't it janvier?