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Existential Flavours

It takes quite some labour to make a proper masala tea. It took me about six years to master it (to my taste, at least).

I discovered masala tea when I travelled in India and it was the one thing I wanted to take with me as a souvenir for life from those fabulous places. I imagined drinking it in my day to day living in London and be able to travel back in the luxuriant forests and backwaters of India, guided by the perfectly blended flavours of masala. Flavours and scents are known for their power over our most emotional memories, and so I was hoping to be able to keep the spice with me forever…even in or especially during London’s gloomy grey days.

And yet, masala tea was not going to make itself for me and my fantasies of luxuriant nature and flavoursome life. My first few trials were spice-less and slightly bitter. What I imagined would be a meaningful ritual, turned into frustration. I couldn’t understand what I was doing wrong. I replaced it with instant chai or Turkish coffee whenever my craving for masala kicked in.

But I didn’t give up completely. Eventually, I discovered that the secret is in the ritual. Spices and the best quality tea are just not enough. You have to do it with heart and patience, adding every element at a time and giving it time to blend and brew. Yes, this does the trick!

As I was making a perfectly flavoursome masala tea earlier (to my taste, at least), it suddenly hit me: it is not enough to fantasise about your perfectly flavoursome life, nor to have the perfect “ingredients”.

You have to do the work, with patience and heart…and perseverance.

What life recipe are you working on?

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