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I'm writing in response to your mail from emily cole about bubbles in tea ('spooky welsh tea money'). i am a brit living in tajikistan and even here in central asia, there are a number of similar traditions about tea. for example, if there are bubbles in the middle of your tea, it means that you will get money, but you have to pinch the bubbles out with your fingers and throw them over your shoulder. however, if the bubbles are around the edge of your tea cup, it means debt, which is obviously not a good thing.
other than black tea - which is drunk without milk and in a small handle-less cup called a 'pial', green tea is also popular here, and if there are sticks from the tea (i don't think that's the technical term for them, but do you know what i mean?) floating in the cup, it means you'll have guests.
tea drinking is a big thing in central asia and there's a ritual that when you have a guest round, you should pour the tea into the guest's pial three times before serving it. there are various reasons for this, none of which make a huge amount of sense to me. and in tajikistan, the amount of tea you pour into the pial is an indicator of how much respect you have for the other person.
I hope this is interesting! Emma.
|Nicey replies: Emma,
That is wonderful stuff indeed, and shows that these superstitions are much more wide spread than we first thought, probably an indicator of their antiquity. Hoorah for you and Central Asia. Big Woos on being our first correspondent from Tajikistan.