U is for... Union and Unique

‘Union’ and ‘unique’ – both have their roots in the Latin, ‘unus’, meaning one. We all know there’s a Royal Wedding looming this month and I was reminded of that phrase, ‘the union of marriage’. So many commentators and spectators (perhaps even you and me) will be speculating whether this ‘union’ will last and offering our unasked-for advice! So, what’s Beatons' view?

We try not to speculate and we’re not great fans of advice either, recognising that knowledge only becomes wisdom when it’s experienced personally. However, we do celebrate and appreciate that we are all UNIQUE. If we were asked to share a pearl of wisdom with the Royal couple it would probably be to remember your relationship is yours and yours alone, irrespective of mere opinion: it’s uniquely yours.

Musing further on ‘union’ here’s an inspirational metaphor. And for the happy couple? Beatons Central (our group HQ) is making a donation to one of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s chosen charities: The Wilderness Foundation UK – their request to any well-wishers.

As to the metaphor? 

Whatever the weather - stay in the pot!
Unsurprisingly we’re heading into the beautiful analogy of tea. Ready to jump into the pot?

Every tea has its own distinctive characteristics – like each of us. To make a distinctive blend, one or two more teas jump into the pot together. We’re familiar with the blends which constitute the Beatons family, Tearooms Franchise Owners and their team members. And, of course, there are the unique blends of Harry and Meghan and every family or couple on the planet. 

The interesting thing about tea is that the process produces something greater than the sum of its parts. And it doesn’t depend on one part taking and the other giving.  It’s ‘give and take’ simultaneously!  The water gives its nature to the tea but also receives the tea leaves’ flavour. The tea leaves give their flavour but also ‘come to life’ and expand as they absorb the water… Isn’t this like the true nature of Love, where giving and receiving are synonymous?

The blend that results is impossible to divide or distinguish – we can never precisely quantify which leaves gave more or less of their juice. I like that. All we know is that we have a good cup of tea in our hands!  We do sense, however, when there’s something missing. If the Jasmine is missing in a Jasmine Blossom tea, it doesn’t taste the same!  Sometimes it’s easy to remove ourselves from the pot - perhaps we’re afraid the water’s going to be too hot, or that we might end up giving too much of ourselves.  The analogy of tea suggests that this will never be the case: the giving includes the receiving although the tea leaf always retains its unique identity.

Liz Darcy Jones
House Poet