I was hooked. My family knew it, most of my twitter followers knew it, and even I myself knew it.
Hi, I'm Rachel, and I have a drinking problem. My tipple of choice? A milky builder’s brew.
Like many heavy drinkers, my addiction grew gradually without my even realising.
It's strange to think now, but I actually had to force myself to get into tea. I know. I only did so to limit my hot chocolate intake over the chilly winter months, and initially I added spoonfuls of sugar (which I'm sure we all agree is tea sacrilege) just to make it bearable.
As I weaned myself of the sweet stuff, my tea consumption increased. On an average day I'd drink at least six cups of milky breakfast tea, and no day felt right without it.
Flatmates learnt not to talk to me before I'd had my first cup of the day, and friends learnt that offering me a cuppa was a stupid question: the answer was always yes.
Whilst living in Germany, I despaired at the lack of fresh milk and the weakness of the generic "black tea." I would declare that the fruity brews drunk by my German flatmates were not "proper tea", and insisted on having my own tea stocks replenished with deliveries from home. *insert sassy girl emoji here*
My Belgian and French housemates told me my tea looked like chocolate milk. I don't even know what to say about that.
|Some drink ludicrous quantities of beer, others plump for tea|
So when I decided to switch to an alkaline diet (eschewing dairy and caffeine amongst other pleasures in life... 80% of the time at least) come January 1st 2015, I knew I was in for a challenge. Me? Give up regular tea?! Surely not!
I told friends of my plans and they simply looked at me in shock, aghast and disbelieving.
And OK, I’ll be honest, I haven’t 100% given it up. But when you’re walking past Waitrose and a free cuppa is calling, what’s a girl to do? Plus, I've decided I really like normal tea with soya milk. Almond milk in tea is gross though. Take my word for it and save yourself the horror.
The headaches during my first few days off the milky stuff were not fun. A few months down the line however, and I only drink a regular cuppa a few times a week, I feel fab and my eyes have been opened to a whole new world of tea.
Whilst I’d only ever tried the free green teas in Wagamama previously (I realise a trend is emerging, but I’m a student, don’t judge!), it turns out there are tons of far yummier flavoured versions for the drinking. Pear and honey? Yes please. Ginseng? I don't know what ginseng is but it turns out I like it! Nettle? Who knew nettles were so nice?!
My uni coursemates and I have recently discovered a secret boiling water tap in uni, and I am not exaggerating when I say it has revolutionised my life. I never used to stay in uni to work due to the lack of tea. Now I simply make sure I've always got my flask and emergency tea bag stash with me and I'm all set for the day.
Until I decide I want to go home and change into my onesie and slippers, that is...
And yes, I still drink at least six cups a day. But hey, there are worse addictions to have.
Do you share my tea addiction? Let me know!