I was reading my own Facebook profile last night, and laughed when I saw my list of activities and interests. Like this blog, it’s a bit eclectic. I like etymology and prayer, baking and ecclesiology, physics and family.
Just now, mixing myself a cup of Vanilla Chai, I was thinking of reviewing the drink. (Because I know all my readers would try and like something just because I said it was good.) Since a friend introduced me to chai, I have tried various mixes. King Soopers brand was the best for a while, but only comes in very small containers. Other brand powders tended to have a grainy taste or that bitter mixture settling to the bottom that wouldn’t dissolve. I can brew and mix my own from a tea bag, and then add first honey and then milk (and sometimes vanilla or mint extracts). That tends to taste bitter. But I feel very cozy and British making hot tea. Oregon Chai makes single-serving packets, which are convenient but expensive. There is the concentrate, to which you add milk. The concentrate must be refrigerated after opening. It’s basically just a lot of work. Costco sells a big can of chai mix, which doesn’t taste all that great. (I suppose I should mention that I like my chai a little weak, and usually reduce the mix to water ratio.) Most recently I found a 32 ounce can, produced by Caffe D’Amore, of Vanilla Chai. It has no hydrogenated oils, though it is not all natural.
I have purchased Chai lattes from several stores, including Starbucks, Caribou, some little tea shop in the Cherry Creek Shopping District, a shop run by Somalis near my work, and Panera. Of those, I prefer the independent tea shop and Starbucks – though their prices are pretty outrageous!
I like the strong, spicy flavor of a good Chai. The cinnamon and cloves and ginger and other spices keep me warm hours after I have enjoyed the last sip. With milk in it, a Chai latte makes a satisfying snack or morning kick. It pairs well with cookies or sandwiches or a lot of fruits. My favorite is the gentling silkiness of vanilla mixed in. There are all kinds of Chai, including vanilla and mint and mango and chocolate. The first two, and plain Chai, are my favorites.
When I put the mix in my mug today, I poured the hot water over it and watched before stirring. The water took over the clumps of floating powder in a way that made it look like a volcano. As the grains of mix soaked and dissolved, those from underneath floated up and then they got soaked, causing this rolling surfacing that was fascinating to watch.
That’s physics. Physics is way more than number-crunching or astronomical calculations. You don’t have to study physics to appreciate it. To me so much of my love of physics is awe at how things work. That they work. How beautiful they are while they’re working. Look at clouds. And ripples of water. How trees bend in the wind. The way powder dissolves into hot water. Falling things. Pushing things. Flight. Floating. Sinking. Magnets. Aren’t they marvelous?
To God be all glory.