A visit by an avid tea drinker gave me the excuse to expound on my fondness for my Alfi. In assessing my tea drinking habits, I realized there were many similarities with my romance reading habits! Like many romance readers (and tea drinkers), I have specific tastes, likes and dislikes. Some I can be quite intransigent about, others more open-minded.
As a romance reader, I connected, then expanded my reading in the genre in a similarly tentative manner–first Austen, then Regencies, then a fearful exploration into historicals and contemporaries when demand far exceeded supply.
Thinking about the visceral and physical aspects of tea helped me understand my (and perhaps other reader’s) reading process. Sometimes trying a new tea opens a whole new world–but if you’re conservative, it takes being forced to try something new in order to get you off the tried and true. For me with tea, it was being served a delicious new type at a restaurant. With reading, my reading world has been expanded by gift books, a friend’s vociferous recommendation, or a desperation buy when travelling….
A new format–tea bags, a thermal pot–opens up a new drinking experience and new opportunities. I think of audio books, eBooks, mobile and eReaders in that vein. And sometimes the issue is expectations: if I don’t think of this drink as tea, but open my mind and consider it just as a hot beverage–does it taste good? So for me, I’ve been able to explore Chai (a bit). And to connect the tea/reading experience, to enjoy urban fantasy and other relationship novels that include romance, but are not Romances.
What–and how–have your horizons been expanded?