Tuesday, April 12, 2011

5th Stop --- Hang Zhou

It took a while to step into the next stop. :P

Here we are Hang Zhou, Xi Hu - West Lake is notorious for centuries for its beauty in history of China. It was part of the Pacific Ocean during the Qin dynasty (220 BC). Through out the next 2 thousand some years, Hang Zhou mayors worked hard on flushing out the salt water and mud, built it into a large fresh water lake with center islands piled by mud excavated from the lake.
Who's looking at whom? I am part of your nature, you are taken in my picture frame. :P

West Lake is known for its beauty differed in each season, Spring being the best, so is Winter after a fresh powdery snow fall. My time wasn't the best choice, but do with best under the restriction.

Surrounding the lake are many temples, pagodas, private residence of the rich and fame. Zhang Jie Shi gifted a min guo style mansion to his last wife Song Mei Ling along the lake before they fleet to Taiwan.
I had not enough time to visit each place that left me a very good reason to revisit time after time.

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Energy of water

It's been a while since I write anything about tea. I have a hard time writing anything lengthy for a while. Here I thank you all readers for your support, and I apologize for not posting much and replying your emails later than sooner. But without your questions, I may not gather up to write anything meaningful. So thank you for your patience, your quest is my motivation!

We all know water makes a whole lot of difference in making a cup of tea. Let's go over the technical/chemical issues commonly known:

1, water source
Tap water, purified tap water, spring water
The ancient texts agreed spring water or running stream water from the mountain maximizes tea grown from the same mountain, hence most people think spring mountain water is best, however best only for teas grown in the same mountain. It may lessen or worsen tea flavor grown else where. For the safest practice, purified water is the most suitable for us drinking a wide range of teas from many different regions, especially across an ocean. Tap water is a big no no, as we all known and should know by now.

2, water temperature
Temperature is crucial, it can make a tea and can kill a tea. With the right temperature, you can extract a cup of golden liquor, leaves are eager to show its best releasing essence of earthy gathering. When too hot, burning leaves are compromised, when too cool, there's not enough force to extract. Learn your tea is the key in finding the right temperature of water, it comes with your six sense, don't trust a thermometer or machine, it limits your sensitivity.

The third mater here I mention is a subtle issue which can not be seen but only perceived with your body and mind.

Energy of water
In modern concept, energy water we think of vitamin water or red bull, something chemically enhanced to accelerate meridian energy movement. The ultimate result of energy is to keep meridian moving so to arrigate every cells of our body, hence keep us alive. But the speed of such movement in human body is slow, one can not keep pumping your blood constantly as you just ran 5 miles, you will die out of energy exhaustion.

Everything on the planet contains energy, water, rock, plants, air, human. Each item's energy varies from each other, a rock from the Rocky has different energy from a rock from China. Crystals for example are rather obvious to sense by placing your hand over it. Human, one person's energy level is different from an other, we can't argue with that, right. When it comes to water, the earth it runs through, the speed it moves, the season it's in, can change the energy reserved in water. Think shower and bath, same water source, however one is running, one is still, shower is refreshing and awakening, while bath is relaxing. When energy of water is absorbed by human, it changes the movement of our body energy, hence change our mind. Mineral content is a source of nutrient that effect human health, mineral can be tasted in roughly 4 ways, sweet, bitter, spicy, and sour. Only sweet water enhances human health, although others may not kill you, but sickness and symptoms usually associate in later life. Regional sickness is most likely originated from source of pubic share water before tap water era, also in most parts of the third world countries.

When choosing a water to brew tea, how you want to feel after drinking a cup of tea can be achieved by selecting water and pouring adjustment. Fast running water, fast moving energy, soft running water, soft energy. Human energy is soft running most of the time, and you do want to remain that way for longevity. Selecting a water runs softly according to human is the most comfortable and well accept by our body even with out anything added. Lu Yu talked about the best water for tea is mountain spring water, then water from middle of Yangzi river. Both water are gentle moving. Well, most of us may not have the luxury of have a running spring in our back yard, we can take maters into our hands. Adjusting pouring speed can be effective as well. Try pouring from high and fast, then soft and slow but steady, the same tea will show you different personalities. For those who likes experiments, this body sensitivity game is a fun challenge. :)