Wintery wisdoms wanted? Look east young cat (part one)


An acquired taste


It took me most of the five years I spent in China to get used to the concept of 

drinking hot WATER.

With nothing else inside.


Many times, when I joined a group of Chinese friends for dinner, the drinks-order for our table would be something like this:

the bad guys - rice Schnaps

(somewhat similar to Japanese Saké)

the not so bad guys - beer

the bad girls - green tea

the good girls - steaming hot water. 



Whereas I for my part fell somewhere in the middle, drinking hot tea and cold beer simultaneously (but not in one glass lol.)


Don´t get me wrong, I wasn´t being a snob. I like to drink tap water, always did.

But for me, water had to be cold to be considered palatable.

If it was hot, for goodness sake, throw SOMETHING in it, a tea bag, instant coffee if you must, lime and cachaca for a hot caipirinha lol...


Until one terribly cold day in mid-winter when I got home and realized that I forgotten to buy tea.

I could go out once again and repair my mistake... but it was so cold outside...

I could have coffee but I didnt feel like it.

I could drink cold water but THAT seemed horrible because I was frozen stiff already.

Hm... should I dare? Drink hot tap water? Like a real GOOD girl???


To my surprise, it tasted kind of nice.

Brought out different flavours than drinking the water cold somehow.

And goddamit, it was an EXPERIENCE :-D


Which I now repeat quite frequently, because hot drinks are really soothing in cold weather, only I don´t like fruit teas, I figure I cannot drink hot caipirinha first thing in the morning, and sometimes I grow bored of drinking tea all day long.

Plus its a great option for people who are more sensitive to caffeine than I am and don´t want to drink tea in the evening. Or ever.


When I first came to China, I lived in a students dormitory in Beijing.

My room came with a straw mattress and a 2 liter thermos flask.

With this thermos, I could stroll down two flights of stairs and draw boiling hot water from a huge contraption that was half invisible in a hot fog and made a lot of gargling noise 24 hours a day.

And the thermos kept the water boiling hot for ANOTHER 24 hours so everyday I had enough hot water for 48 hours included in my rent. What a bargain :-D


My dormitory had central heating, because it was a dedicated building for overseas students, but the classrooms were another matter: scattered all over the campus and unheated.

Beijing winter is beautiful, crisp and sunny most of the time, but also between 0 and minus 10 degrees Celsius... and the only thing that kept me going in class were the equally steamy and gurgling hot water contraptions that could be found on every corridor of the school buildings.

Which is where you would find me in the five minute break that we had every hour, refilling my portable tea glass. It was not the same but looked very similar to the one in the picture, and back in 1998, it was avantgarde. The old school way was to use an old jam jar, or, if you were traditional, but SOMEHOW liked to show off anyway, an empty Nescafe container.

I was torn back and forth, cause an empty Nescafe glass seemed so camp, but in the end I chose the above style, because it has THE MESH.

The mesh is there to keep the tea leaves from coming out and getting into your mouth as you drink. Cause this tea glass was invented with green tea in mind of course. And green tea can be kept in your cup and be infused with a new round of water until all the flavor is gone. 

Or even afterwards! cause as we just learnt, it is perfectly normal to drink hot water, and:

with or without flavor, your tea or whatnot is not only gonna warm you from the inside as you sip it, it can also serve as a handwarmer.


Which is why I am giving away 3 of the tea glasses to you, my dear readers in a lucky draw this coming sunday:

All you need to do to enter the lucky draw is leave a comment on any social media post where I am sharing this blog, grandmouse flausch in one or two words, either on facebook, youtube or instagram.

The lucky draw itself will take place coming sunday, 29th of September, 5 pm Berlin time, on my facebook fanpage:


Have a lovely week and looking forward to seeing there ;-)