"Polly put the kettle on!" United Kingdom by budapest8
United Kingdom Travel Guide: 98,616 reviews and 243,735 photos
A Brief History of Tea
For more than 3000 years, the people who live in what is now modern China were the sole beneficiaries of the pleasures of tea. It wasn't until the 8th century CE that this beverage was introduced to Japan, where it eventually rose to iconic status in the Japanese Tea Ceremony.
In the 17th century, Chinese tea crossed into the larger world by two routes: Ships of the Dutch East India Company transported it to Holland and beyond, and Russia began importing it via camel caravan. One hundred years later, the British afternoon tea was commonplace and their empire served to establish tea around the globe, including China's near neighbor India, a country whose people had never experienced tea's epicurean delights but — as was discovered in the early 19th century — had its own indigenous tea plants in the northeastern province of Assam.
Tea has since become the most widely consumed beverage on earth next to water. It has achieved a secure place in the history of its homeland, China, and in the cultures of at least two other countries: Japan and Great Britain. Its popularity has grown exponentially in recent years, evidently fending off spirited onslaughts from its sister beverage coffee, and ensuring its dominance in the world of refreshment.
Being British is about driving in a German car to an Irish pub for a Belgian beer, then travelling home, grabbing an Indian curry or a Turkish kebab on the way, to sit on Swedish furniture and watch American shows on a Japanese TV.
And the most British thing of all? Suspicion of anything foreign.
Only in Britain... can a pizza get to your house faster than an ambulance.
Only in Britain... do supermarkets make sick people walk all the way to the back of the shop to get their prescriptions - while healthy people can buy cigarettes at the front.
Only in Britain... do people order double cheeseburgers, large fries and a DIET coke.
Only in Britain... do banks leave both doors open and chain the pens to the counters.
Only in Britain... do we leave cars worth thousands of pounds on the drive and lock our junk and cheap lawn mower in the garage.
Only in Britain... do we use answering machines to screen calls and then have call waiting so we won't miss a call from someone we didn't want to talk to in the first place.
Only in Britain... are there disabled parking places in front of a skating rink.
NOT TO MENTION...
3 Brits die each year testing if a 9v battery works on their tongue.
142 Brits were injured in 1999 by not removing all pins from new shirts.
58 Brits are injured each year by using sharp knives instead of screwdrivers.
19 Brits have died in the last 3 years believing that Christmas decorations were chocolate.
British Hospitals reported 4 broken arms last year after cracker pulling accidents.
101 people since 1999 have had broken parts of plastic toys pulled out of the soles of their feet.
18 Brits had serious burns in 2000 trying on a new jumper with a lit cigarette in their mouth.
A massive 543 Brits were admitted to A&E in the last two years after opening bottles of beer with their teeth.
5 Brits were injured last year in accidents involving out of Control Scalextric cars.
In 2000 eight Brits cracked their skull whilst throwing up into the toilet.
I am proud to be British
Britain abolished the slave trade 200 years ago this week.
Its landmarks are an abiding legacy of cruelty.
I remember about what my Great Great Great Great Uncle
Sir Thomas Fowell Buxton (1786-1845)
accomplished with Wilberforce and 25 March 2007 will mark
200 years to the day that a Parliamentary Act was passed
to abolish the slave trade in the British colonies.
Travel by train in the UK is no longer a simple affair and after an abcense of 3 years from the old country I was truly... more travel advice
I have 2 members of my family on the new 5 pound note...Elizebeth Fry and Sir T.F.Buxton. The pound (symbol: £; ISO... more travel advice
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