I have met some of the most incredible tea people via Twitter. One of my favorites is Robert Godden, aka The DevoTEA, and author of The Infusiast. Robert's book will be launching right here in Las Vegas on June 6th and I asked him to write up a little something for Joy's Jabberings. As is customary, he made me snort!
On my own blog, I once wrote: “Las Vegas. Why would I want to go there? Its very name conjures up images: not always good ones. Mostly of course, it’s murders. I watched at least the first six seasons of CSI and I learned that in Las Vegas, a bunch of people get murdered every day and it takes 45 minutes (including commercials) to figure out who did it.” Things are different now, as in one month’s time, Lady Devotea and myself will touch down in that near mythical city: we’ll walk from 36 hours of flying into the Nevada morning air expecting heat and neon and glamour and vice and wealth and skyscrapers and pyramids and tigers. We’ll be visiting some landmarks and going to some touristy things, but more than anything, it will be the first opportunity to meet many tea friends in person. It’s all very well to think you know someone via blogs and videos and panels and hangouts and the like, but meeting someone you know on line is always interesting; and never quite what you are expecting. The kicker here is that with the tea world converging on Vegas for the World Tea Expo; it won’t just be meeting one person or a couple but an endless stream. There’ll be the inevitable shuffle of on-line names versus actual names: “Yes, I’m The Mighty Warlock, King of The Ocelot Kingdom, but call me Dave”. There’ll be the awkwardness of past transgressions “Aren’t you the guy who described my review of Bat Chewed Genmaicha as ‘infantile and ill-informed’”. There’ll be the failing of memory banks: “Ah yes, TeaPuppet27, I liked the piece you wrote on… that black tea from somewhere”. And there’ll be the zealous: “I know you said you’d rather drink turpentine that Genmaicha but I have one I want you to try right now”. Las Vegas will be home for us for about seven frantic days. In that time, we’ll launch the new book; speak at two functions, attend another couple, celebrate our 27th wedding anniversary and possibly win our fortune by inserting a dime into a slot machine. Note: we say neither “dime” nor “slot machine” in Australia, but we’ve been learning to speak American. It’s most certainly going to be a great time, but the thing that is the most exciting will be all those tea people in one place, setting up waves of love for our beverage that will escape from the Convention Centre and cascade across the country with an unstoppable energy until the whole country is immersed. For a country that some consider started when loose leaf tea was dropped into water on December 16th 1773, it’s time to come full circle; and we plan to embrace America in the way that we feel embraced by the tea community. And it all starts in Las Vegas.
Robert Godden is one half of the creative and entrepreneurial team behind The Devotea. With Anne Drury-Godden, AKA Lady Devotea, they are blending tea and stories and sharing with anyone who cares to listen.