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East Coast USA, United States
Lowcountry porch sitter. Appalachian Mountain lover. Finger Lakes dreamer.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Leisure Settings and Sipping

One of my greatest pleasures in life was to spend some work related time in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. The experience so grand that I ventured back to Holland in my personal travel, spending a great deal of time in Utrecht with friends.

The people, food, and lifestyle of the country simply relaxing, green (literally and figuratively), filled with water recreation, artistic and cultural diversity and divinely blessed with beautiful citizens inside and out.  Much of what one "likes" when visiting a place is for what one can find to do there, but I would also add "for what one can NOT do there."  That is, the art of living a moment unencumbered. A moment enjoyed just long enough to have escaped a routine or relished briefly as an interlude far and away from more taxing times of the day.

I found ample space in my itinerary among the Dutch for ventures to the cafes to sip on hot beverages~and consume an inordinate amount of stroopwaffles.  To this day, one of my all time favorite simple pleasures in life is to enjoy leisure moments sipping. That simple act, sipping, may transpire alone, with a good read or a friend in deep conversation.  Cold or hot, sipping is my leisure habit of choice.

There was a point in my coastal life when "cafe time" was a simple two block walk away from my home office.  During that time I found a place to collect my thoughts, share space with others and become an active participant in a subset of my local community. Sadly that local coffee house closed and has yet to be replaced (there are two delightful coffee shops~City Java and Common Ground available in nearby Beaufort, but require a little more effort than a stroll down the block). Thus, from there grew my house made adventures in concoctions of all sorts.

House made Chai or more descriptively spiced milk tea has become my afternoon escape in the absence of my local coffee shop. I have experimented with a wide variety of recipes (and trust me when I say many abound across the internet~varying slightly in the components, i.e., the type of tea, the spice inclusions and/or the choice of sweetener). But my preferred version at this time continues to be an Epicurious version of Masala Chai that includes white peppercorns and fennel seeds.

Travel to escape or visit other climes continues to appeal, but sipping never goes asunder at home in a locale that abounds with many an unencumbered moment.
Life Enrichment is like a travel and learn program...offering infusions that make every day life thereafter far more interesting! ~ Ann-Marie Adams, Reflections on a Meaningful Life