The Russian Tea Story

My love of tea has taken me to many places, with a few adventures in between. In the early 80’s when Ruth was touring Russia and Siberia as an entertainer, I was along for the ride as a “Showbiz Mom.”

My lifelong love of tea (complete with milk and sugar) was not so easy to find. The Russians only allowed old people and babies to have milk. The climate was so cold that cows could not exist above ground, and were somewhat rare, and kept underground, so milk was considered a luxury.
When I expressed my surprise, they placated me by serving me strong black tea with a teaspoonful of blackberry jam to sweeten it. Although it was not exactly to my taste, I became accustomed to it during my travels over a few years, but when landing back in the good US ofA, my first request on landing at the airport was always a cup of hot tea, with milk and sugar.
It’s amazing the things you take for granted. Mind you, now that I am truly an OLD person, I might find myself in a different category. But I feel really sad, thinking about the simple, kindly folk that we met and befriended on our Russian trips, as the media has led the public to consider ALL Russians as bad people, due to the shocking Ukraine situation, and nothing could be further from the truth.
Believe me, I know, I was the recipient of their warmth, friendship and kindness.

Dr. Angie McCartney