08 January 2017

surprises in the taj mahal tea leaves

Yesterday through the never ending leftovers of the yucky snow accumulation, I ventured in a northwesterly direction to Boulder in hunt of a well stocked Indian grocer. Tucked away in a sleepy little strip mall, I stumbled onto a little taste of India complete with the heavenly aromas that haunts my memories.

I slowly wandered the aisles seeking out the items on my list while being washed over with memories of that magical time, overcome with yearning to return to the arms of the Tour Director, to return home. The Edward Sharpe and Magnetic Zeros' song "Home is Wherever There is You"overtakes my being as I write this.

Tea was a central component of our daily life in Jaipur; our ritual of sorts. Once Tour Director taught me how to make it, each morning either one of us would whip up the masala tea or we would make it together. Together was always the best - we'd tag team the simple steps.

At the back of a corner, there was the tea selection. Joy overcame me as I spotted the iconic blue box of Taj Mahal tea. I quickly snatched up a box even though the bright orange price tag read $11.49. That simple box of tea serves as our connection.

This morning, I got up and made the tea just as I was taught and done so many times with Tour Director. That first sip that I'd assume would bring me joy through my memories remembering and cherishing those inconsequential yet sacred moments we shared did not act as predicted. Instead I felt immense sadness that Tour Director was not here, that we were not together; the pangs of missing him were intense. So much so that I found myself crying in the face of the chasm that physically separates us. Never have I felt this way about a man. Never.

But I continue to sip my tea through my tears focusing on the fact that one day we will be reunited again inshallah.

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