Hello! New member from Garland here, a suburb of Dallas. I kind of got stuck here after working with a computer game company as their Music and Sound Director. If you've heard of "Duke Nukem 3D" or the song "Grabbag," you've heard of me.
I've been drinking tea since I was a child, if you can call what I was drinking (Lipton in a bag) tea. I grew up with the Texas sweet tea culture, but due to my weight I had to cut the "sweet" out of it. Occasionally we'd do fancy dress, go to a Chinese restaurant, and order "hot tea," thinking we were the cream of the crop. That was my childhood.
As an adult, every once in a while I'd drink some English Breakfast or similar, again thinking that was fancy. Then I had a gastric bypass, back in 2009, and my diet had to change. Up until a few years ago, I was stuck with Crystal Light fake tea (I still drink it instead of straight water) until we got a Keurig machine. I started experimenting with some of the teas available for it and found them lacking. Then, due to an accident and poor health, I was forced to retire on SSA disability.
In my spare time, I tried learning about beers, but a sudden bout of acute pain has shut that down due to the painkillers I have to take. In its place, I've started trying to learn about tea.
I'm about as raw on the subject as you can get ... well, maybe not that raw. I have a pair of Adagio IngenuiTEA steepers. I know what pu erh is and am learning to make and drink it (I'm drinking a 2005 pu erh sample right now). I love Lapsang Souchong. I've ordered from multiple vendors, including Adagio Teas and Teavivre. Finally, I have a friend from another website who is sending me some "back alley Beijing tea" as a gift, since she has no one back in the States to send Christmas presents to.
My son and his wife are more into the Japanese side of tea, being matcha lovers. I haven't gone that way, although I like matcha-flavored snacks from Japan. Unfortunately, aside from him, I'm on a solitary and somewhat financially-limited pursuit, since my wife does not like hot tea and refuses to be converted. She also holds the purse strings and complains long and loud when I exceed certain invisible lines of spending.
Right now, the 2005 pu erh is my learning target. I have a 5g chunk (I know not the proper names for tea culture) left unbrewed, and I'd like to get it off to a good start. I'd appreciate help from anyone who could help me avoid the mistakes I made with the first 5g.