A Story About a Cup of Tea (Part II)
by Shellen Lubin
July 1, 2022
Story for Friday Night
A Story About a Cup of Tea
NARRATOR: There were two friends, Jonatha and Lucinda, who used to love to meet for tea. Sometimes they’d go to Jonatha’s, but usually they went to Lucinda’s, because Jonatha’s apartment—while very cozy—was down a few steps from the street level on her quiet city street, so during the day it could be very dark. Lucinda’s apartment, on the other hand, was way up high over the city, and she had a balcony with an overhang above it, so the two of them could sit outside in the shade and drink their tea (with or without cookies) while they watched the sun set over the river in the distance.
One Thursday Jonatha showed up for tea time with a small basket covered with a flowered gingham cloth.
LUCINDA: Oooo, that looks lovely. What is it?
JONATHA: Open it and see. That’s how you find out these things. LUCINDA: Oh. Oh, dear.
JONATHA: What’s the matter?
LUCINDA: Well, I love scones. I’m so glad you brought scones. But you brought us spearmint tea.
JONATHA: I thought you loved spearmint tea. Don’t you? And this is a special organic homegrown home dried concoction.
LUCINDA: I do, I do love spearmint tea, but I prepared a whole lovely pot for us of this special imported European rosehip tea. And rosehips tea goes so beautifully with scones.
JONATHA: So, we’ll have the rosehips tea this time and the spearmint tea next time.
LUCINDA: No, no, no, you brought it for me, we should have it.
JONATHA: That doesn’t make any sense.
LUCINDA: We don’t have to both have the same kind of tea. JONATHA: Okay, I’ll have spearmint tea and you have rosehips tea.
LUCINDA: No, no, no, you brought the spearmint tea for me. I’ll have spearmint tea and you have rosehips tea.
JONATHA: Okay, that should work.
NARRATOR: So, Lucinda heated up another pot of water and made an entirely separate pot of spearmint tea. She poured a cup of rosehips tea for Jonatha and a cup of spearmint tea for herself and put the two scones on plates. Then she brought a tray outside with the two pots of tea, two full cups of tea, and two scones on plates. The two women sat down on the balcony with the tea and scones.
JONATHA: Something is still very wrong. You have spearmint tea, but you like the rosehips tea better with scones.
LUCINDA: Okay, let’s exchange. JONATHA: Good.
LUCINDA: No. That still doesn’t work. I want to try the tea you brought. JONATHA: So try it.
LUCINDA: Well, how can I? I’m sitting here with a cup of rosehips tea. If I just add some spearmint tea to it I won’t taste the spearmint at all.
JONATHA: And I’m sitting here with a cup of spearmint tea. If I just add some rosehips to it I won’t taste the rosehips at all.
NARRATOR: They both looked down at their cups and then at each other.
LUCINDA: I feel like the Peterkins from The Peterkin Papers. I know this is a ridiculous conundrum, but I can’t quite figure it out.
JONATHA: Let’s start over. Empty our cups so we can really take a bit at a time and really taste each one.
LUCINDA: Excellent idea. And while we’re at it, let’s have a bite of scone with each flavor tea so we can decide which one goes best with the scones!
NARRATOR: So, they emptied the tea cups back into their respective pots and started all over. They each tasted the rosehips tea with scone, which was fragrant and sweet and made them feel quite homey and cozy. Then they each tasted the spearmint tea with scone, which was refreshing yet mellow, with only a little bit of that bite of mint that’s marvelously grand in small doses.
LUCINDA: They’re both yummy. Very different, but both very yummy. JONATHA: Yes, they are. So which one shall we have today?
LUCINDA: Maybe … both? I wonder how they would taste together.
JONATHA: Ewww. No. I think that would taste terrible. Flowery rosehips with pungent mint?
LUCINDA: Like our friendship? A mishmash of flavors? I think that works pretty damn well.
JONATHA: Okay, you got me there. LUCINDA: I think it’s worth a try.
JONATHA: Half and half? LUCINDA: I don’t know.
JONATHA: Well then, how much of one and how much of the other? LUCINDA: Okay, let’s try half and half.
JONATHA: What about if it’s awful?
LUCINDA: What if?
JONATHA: We’ll waste the tea. LUCINDA: We can make more.
JONATHA: But would that mean then that our friendship is awful, too?
LUCINDA: No, silly! Of course not! Then we just spill it out and laugh at what a bad idea that turned out to be.
JONATHA: And tell our kids about the silly day we got stuck trying to figure out how to share tea.
LUCINDA: And tell our grandkids someday!
JONATHA: They’ll all tell each other! Like we tell about the time your mom and her mom were so poor, and her mom thought she had spent her last quarter for the bus home but she found one more in her pocket, and so she splurged on a black and white ice cream soda for the two of them that they slurped on through two straws.
LUCINDA: Or the time your mom and her mom got stuck on the George Washington Bridge for over an hour when they shut it down to set up equipment, and everyone was honking around them, but they took out their groceries and spread some out on the dashboard and had a picnic!
JONATHA: Either we’ll have a great cup of tea … LUCINDA: Or—if not—we’ll have a great story!
JONATHA: Maybe even both!