Growing up “a cup of tea” with the quick fix for whatever was happening whether good or bad. My mom is British so a cup of tea wasn’t a tea bag in a mug. Having a cup of tea involved making a tray of tea. Boiling the water, heating the pot, steeping the tea and putting the tea cozy over the pot. The teapot was placed on the tray with a pitcher of milk, sugar bowl, tea spoons, tea cups, saucers, napkins and biscuits or chocolates and carried to the dining room table. FYI: Biscuits or bickies is British for cookies. Sometimes even recently my mom would say “who wants to be mother” that meant you got to pour the tea. As a kid that was a big deal. My mom would always put the milk in the cup first. She told us (my brother and sisters) that she could tell when “we hadn’t put the milk in first”. I thought she could taste the difference from milk in first but I think that our faces gave away that we were trying to pull a fast one.
Yes, a cup of tea could fix anything. It could calm you down or wake you up. It remains the ultimate comfort food. My mom is currently in a rehab facility. She fell and there are big changes in the months ahead. And every time I go to visit her I bring her a “good cup of tea”. It may not be delivered on a tray and the tea bag is in the cup but it is still the ultimate comfort food even if served in a cup that says Dunkin Donuts or Starbucks.
One funny tea story: As a kid we visited the site of the Boston Tea Party and I commented “that must have been a lot of tea bags.”