Friday July 17, 2015

Tea on Ice

A story about cold tea, brought on by a memory triggered by my mug of tea going cool.

Many years ago, we visited Europe, flying in to London via British Air. In the third seat of our row, next to me, was a boy, approximately 12 or 13 years old, who was returning home after a summer spent with cousins in the US. (He was bring back bags of M&Ms and other US candies to share with his schoolmates).

I asked for tea with my meal. (This was back in the days when planes served meals). The tea wasn't very hot and I had some ice in my cup from a previous ginger ale, so I poured the tea over the ice.

The boy was very interested in weird American customs, so he asked me a question and this conversation ensued:

"Do you like it like that?"
"Like what?"
"With ice?"
"Well, the ice melted, so it's mostly lukewarm."
"Do you like it lukewarm?"

We had many interesting experiences with iced tea on that trip. Ice in drinks, in general, and iced tea in particular are (were?) considered to be one of the many weird things that Americans do that are Simply Not Done in Britain or Europe.

When iced tea is not on the menu, we ask for hot tea and a glass of ice.

At a Wimpy burger, the counter person told Rich "I'm not sure I'm allowed to do that". (Rich assured him that, if the manager asked, he could say the crazy American insisted.)

At a restaurant on Copenhagen, the waitress just stared at Rich. Thinking perhaps she had misunderstood him, he began "We want iced tea, so we pour the..". The waitress stopped him mid sentence with a frosty, "I Know! What you're going to DO with it."

(Our European friends at the table, programmers all, got a good laugh out of this).

Tea on Ice ( in category Random Thoughts , Trivial Pursuits , World of Work ) - posted at Fri, 17 Jul, 16:14 Pacific | «e»


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