Ran across these photos the other day, and realized I hadn’t posted this up from last June! The Mucha Farmer’s Association sponsored an event to showcase the area’s agricultural goods, so of course Aliang and I were there representing Tie Kuan Yin (Iron Goddess) and Bao Jong teas.
Our event was just inside the entrance to the zoo, where were last year (click HERE for that report). They had a local drum troupe perform, and a few dances, along with snack foods from famous local shops. We basically talked tea and passed out samples, as we weren’t officially supposed to be selling anything there, but it was fun to hang out at any rate!
Chinese peanut brittle
Tea nougats – yum!
Aliang in his natural environment
They were taking turns giving rides in a kind of Taiwan-style rickshaw, and many of the local politicians and officials (like this one) were on hand to press the flesh and kiss a few babies! Being the only foreigner participating in the event, I naturally was dragged into a lot of photos, but it wasn’t that bad. I’ll do anything to get people to drink more tea!
The biggest surprise for me was the poster Aliang had made for the backdrop – it was from a lecture he gave at the Wenshan Public Assembly Hall a few weeks previously. I suppose I don’t mind being famous, but you’d think they would at least have had the decency to airbrush a bit more hair on for me!!
We were there for about half a day. I don’t get paid anything for helping out, which is OK because I get to practice my pouring techniques, and of course ‘all the tea you can drink’ isn’t a bad deal either (the public restrooms are just behind our booth). Here’s a couple of shots of my ‘advanced gaiwan’ technique - a bit tricky to get used to, but handy when the gaiwan itself is a little too hot to handle. The trick is to set the lid, then scoop
the entire set (saucer, cup and lid) off the table with one hand. When done smoothly, it’s really cool, but I need to find a saucer with a higher base so I can get my fingers under it.
I also experimented a bit with different grips and pouring styles on the ‘Hsi Sz’ (beautiful girl) pot – we have quite a few of this particular style, which we use for a lot of our Oolongs at the shop, and I find the balance to be slightly tricky for some reason. By the end of the day, however, I pretty much had it under control.
*By the way, don’t let the fact I spend hours handling my equipment fool you into thinking I’m some kind of ‘tea nerd’ – I’m actually a pretty cool dude!