Come in, welcome to our tea room! Have a cup of tea. You can’t live without it. The table is set, too, waiting for you. The fine porcelain cups are inherited from our mothers. The linden honey is a gift from Ufa. Its taste and colour are different from Finnish honey. I think it is so sweet that it makes you swallow your tongue. The jam is made from raspberries gathered from our own forest. You can also taste our freshly made white cookies (biscuits). My neighbour’s grandmother taught me how to prepare them.
How should you drink the tea? Strong or weak? My grandmother used to say that Moscow should not be seen. Now, do you know why she would say that? In her time, “Moscow” was written at the bottom of the cups. Maybe it’s true: If you saw the word “Moscow”, the tea was too weak.
A Tatar’s life is impossible without tea. When travelling as a tourist, you are always longing for a hot, strong tea. Just soaking a tiny tea bag in unboiled water is not attractive at all. May God never separate us from hot black tea brewed in a porcelain teapot! I wish also that we could always sit at the table with friends, “improving” the world, and forgetting about all our worries for a while!