In a Time of Crisis

I woke up this morning to a nightmare! It was heart racing, shallow breathing, panic mode full blown horror! All I could think about was how to get out of the terrifying crisis, and what blend of tea I wanted to prepare for myself after this torment had passed. 

After I was able to catch my breath, and the crisis stopped, I thought about what tea to prepare. I have had people ask me “what is your favorite tea”. I have usually picked several favorite teas and have exclaimed that there is a tie. Today’s crisis has shown me that there is one tea that stands out to me. The tea is my go to tea. Read on to find out what the crisis was and what my go to tea is during and after a crisis. 

The Bedroom Visitor 

This morning I was alarmed to find a SNAKE in my bedroom, slithering on the floor approximately two feet from my bed. At first I thought it was a big worm that somehow slithered into my room. I bent down to snap a photo and noticed the triangular head on this ruffian! Yes, indeed, it was a snake in my bedroom. I was glad that someone else was in the house in addition to me. Otherwise no one would believe me when I told the story about the snake in my bedroom. 

Once my senses came flooding back, I knew what needed to be done. Capturing the snake before it slithered somewhere else in my house was of primary importance. (I am not sure if captured is the correct terminology for securely trapping the snake). I looked around the bedroom for something that could be used to capture the snake temporarily, until the snake could be taken outside. The container needed to be wide mouthed and smooth on the sides, so that the snake could be easily trapped, yet not be able to slither up and over the side of the container. There could be NO escaping for this snake! 

Quickly I went down the hall to the kitchen and grabbed a pie container and the lid to catch the snake in. Running back to the bedroom, with the pie container in hand, the snake was spotted heading towards the bed. The empty pie container was positioned on top of the snake, just before it slithered under the bed. 

Bounding up the stairs to solicit the help that I needed, while rapidly explaining/shouting that there was a snake in the bedroom, garnered a response of disbelief. I was persistent in explaining that this was an emergency, a crisis actually, and action was needed NOW! We both ran down the stairs, grabbed a thick magazine cover to slide under the pie container. We dashed back to the bedroom, slid the thick magazine cover under the pie container then followed closely behind the thick paper with the pie container lid. Once I knew the snake was corralled in the pie container, I flipped the container over and secured the lid onto the container. 

After the shock of finding a snake in the bedroom, I felt a bit shaken, or unhinged. The stress of capturing the snake without getting bit, or constricted to death by the snake (author’s creative license - the snake was approximately six inches in length), I breathed a huge sigh of relief. Too much excitement for me, all before my morning cup of tea!

A Snake Is A Snake No Matter How Colorful

The snake was taken out to the front driveway. The concern regarding releasing the snake in the backyard, was that Louie The Dog or his sister, might be bit by the snake. The lid was lifted slowly off the pie container, and the snake was flung/dumped far away from us, onto the driveway. 

That is when I noticed the colors. Intense orange, coral, and yellow markings were on the snake. I grabbed my cell phone and took pictures. My reptile handler warned me that I was getting too close for pictures, and to back away immediately. 

The marking around the snake’s neck was unusual. It had a thick dark orange, almost red ring around the neck. The underside of the snake was vibrant in color. It was an orange color, turning to coral towards the outer edges of the snake. A pale yellow was on the very outer edge of the orange belly of the snake. It was a beautifully colored snake, but a snake is a snake no matter how colorful. 

We left the snake on the front driveway, and I went inside to make tea. When I came out to dispose of the snake, before it slithered into the garage, it was gone. I think a bird picked it up, planning on the perfect bird breakfast. I really don’t know where the snake went, so long as it didn’t slither back into my house! 

What Type Of Snake 

A ring-necked snake, or ringneck snake was the perpetrator of my peace and serenity. The Diadophis punctatus snake can be found throughout most of the United States, and deemed harmless to humans. Evidently these snakes are rarely seen during the day because they are secretive, elusive, evasive, plus nocturnal. The adult ringneck snake can grow to 15 inches (25-28 cm) in length. Evidently the snake I found was a juvenile, which typically grows to 8 inches (20 cm) in length. An unusual factoid about this snake is that its fangs are in the back of its mouth and are bent back. To tiny prey a bite could be lethal, but to humans, dogs, and cats a bite most likely would not be lethal. 

What Type Of Tea 

Mornings that start out with snakes in the bedroom are a frightful crisis in my mind. All I could think about, while chasing down a slithering snake, was “what tea should I fix” and “I need a strong cup of tea in order to deal with this first thing in the morning”. When the snake was banished to the front driveway, and probably picked up by a bird, only then did I put water in the kettle to boil. 

The tea that I frequently pull off the shelf when I find my world chaotic, and crisis filled, or when I need comfort in a cup, is Earl Grey black tea. Green tea, white tea, even herbal tea can incorporate the oil of bergamot, to create an Earl Grey beverage. However, for me, Earl Grey black tea is the tonic for me! I think this tea has a comforting aroma, and soothing taste that pairs well with various foods. I enjoy the full bodied flavor profile and the thick mouthfeel that drinking a cup of hot Earl Grey black tea affords me. I feel comforted drinking this tea, the same way I receive a serving of comfort while eating a slice of apple pie. 

In Snake Filled Crisis Situation 

If you find yourself in a crisis filled moment, snakes or no snakes, what would your cup of comfort tea be? Which tea would you reach for to steel your nerves, calm you down, or give you mental strength and clarity in a tense situation? There is a world of tea to choose from. Every answer is correct, and as unique and individual as each person reading this article. Explore the world of tea and pick a comfort tea for your next challenge that rears its head, ready to strike at you. 

May your life be snake free, 

Leslie 

References: 

Wikipedia.org, Ring - Necked Snake.

About the Author

Leslie Sundberg is a World Tea Academy Certified Tea Specialist, a World Tea Academy Apprentice Tea Sommelier, a Specialty Tea Institute Level IV trained Tea Specialist, and a Tea and Business Etiquette Specialist. On any given day, Leslie can be found teaching, speaking or sharing in the joys of a cup of tea.  No matter what Leslie is doing or where she is, one thing remains constant: 4:00 in the afternoon is tea time!

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