Every afternoon, after lunch and before naptime,* I need a real kick in the pants. It’s a time of day where I get groggy, bored with work, and some sort of typing ailment usually flares up. (Numb shoulders, carpal tunnel, or the standard headache – they’re all in cahoots with one another.)
Generally, this kick comes as a sometimes-deserved break. I’ll see what King of the Hill (KOTH) is up to on TV, or make myself a snack of olives and apples. Sometimes errands are run. Other times Molly, my dog/best co-worker ever, and I play an intense game of fetch.
But what I really want – in a land where traditions don’t die and are allowed to transfer continents – is teatime. An hour or so where tea is served, usually with a cucumber sandwich or finger dessert. Every day sounds a little ridiculous (I really do work, I swear), but once or twice per week would just be dandy.
During these tea parties, the townswomen and I would dust off our corsets and take turns hosting these gossipy events. We’d say things like, “Votes for women!” and “My petticoat needs a good mending,” and would brag as to whose hired help is the most competent. (In a world where I’m bringing back teatime, I’m also bringing back servants – but with updated labor laws.) Although we would still be in charge of making our own tea; it is considered too precious for servants’ hands – I learned that from the Olympics.
The good China would also be used, and our cups would be lined with various flavoring agents – lemon wedges, droplets of honey, and perhaps the occasional sprig of mint. Even milk for anyone who thinks that combination is worth drinking.
Then, when this old fashioned even had been completed, we would go back to our respective jobs. The mothers to their children, the teachers to their student children, and me and the other office drones back to our loving computers. Teatime will have been the break we needed to get through the day. After which, we would be tided over until the day’s next fictional event, brillig.
“’Brillig’ means four o’clock in the afternoon – the time when you begin broiling things for dinner.”
-Humpty Dumpty in Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There
(although no one is cooking dinner that early)
Until this teatime once again becomes a thing, I’ll prepare myself for its return. I’ll drink tea throughout the mornings, afternoons, and decaf in the evenings, lest my habits keep me from sleeping. And as for the finger desserts, I’m sure there’s a good British cookbook out there somewhere. I’ll keep my kitchen utensils ready.
*Assuming I take a pre-scheduled nap every day, which is only sometimes true.
Teatime print courtesy of Creative Review