Tea-Time & The Rules of Flying!

There are many rules of flying, but the first is always pack some tea bags of a variety you enjoy.  Put these in your hand luggage as you main luggage will invariably go astray.  I travel quite a bit to the Middle East and the only tea you will find there is of the mint or flower variety.  Now whilst I occasionally enjoy and good glass of mint tea after dining.  I need, really need a morning cup of tea to start me functioning.  Another vital cup is during the afternoon, especially if you have come back from alternatively being fried by 50 degree heat whilst trying to find a cab or your hire car, and then being air-conditioned back to practically zero in each shopping mall you visit.  In many places in the Middle East you will be sat down quite suddenly in a shop and presented with a glass of tea.  If the choice is given, aim for the apple variety which is  quite drinkable and does not resemble cheap perfume in any way.  Most hotels will rush away when asked for ‘breakfast tea’ and come back brandishing a packet of Lipton’s tea which closely resembles dirty washing up water when milk is added and tastes much about the same.   Whereas your own little tea bag can be quietly stashed away in your bag and can  provide a taste of home whenever needed.  It is necessary to bear in mind that countries like Tunisia do not know what an electric kettle is and it may be necessary to purchase a miniature one from an expensive airline shop rather than spend several hours explaining the concept of an electric kettle to a bewildered receptionist.  Though having the ability to boil water may not be the las of your worries.  When I phoned room service in Tunis and asked for some milk to be sent up, they provided a large jug of boiling milk and I was still no nearer getting my cup of tea. Eventually a long walk to the local supermarket provided me with the wherewithal and I always carry a few passion pills (sweetners) as I am never sweet enough !

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