I am far from alone in wrongly anticipating that the Covid pandemic by now would be under control and I would be planning a summer trip somewhere. But with all the indices here in the U.S. going in the wrong direction, we are stuck at home for the foreseeable future.
One good piece of news arrived recently in the form of a box from Japan that I had shipped months ago early in the pandemic but that got stuck in the Japanese postal system. In the box were Kyusu tea pots by Yamada Yutaro that I had hoped to release in my online shop before the arrival of this year’s new Japanese tea crop in June.
That June date has long past and I read in the news that the long rainy season that tormented Japan this year is also finally over. The humid hot summer has officially started and this is also the beginning of the toughest work environment for many craftspeople in Japan. I remember Yutaro san telling me that in the summer, he sleeps during the day and works at night because the heat in his studio reaches over 100 degrees every day. He is constantly battling with mosquitoes because he has many containers of standing water for making clays lying around in the studio.
When I reported the good news of his pots’ delivery, Yutaro san said, “I’m glad they arrived safely. I hope that we can encourage people to have tea and enjoy using tea wares even more often since we’re all staying at home.” I chuckled because I’ve never heard of anyone as young as him (only 28 years old) talk about making tea at home.
In a stressful time, tea is always a good idea, and I’m happy to be able to share Yutaro san’s passion and thoughtful work during this time. I drink more tea now than ever, because tea time has become an important ritual for both my husband and I to take a break from work at home. So put on the kettle and join me and Yutaro san for tea.