Have You Begun?


We often think of new beginnings at New Year’s Day, the start of months or seasons, on our birthday or at rites of passage. Sometimes, though, new beginnings come at mid-week, mid-month, mid-season—at some seemingly random time.

Incentive to Actually Begin

And at a new beginning, a new venture, I think I need a bracing beverage, something that takes a stand, something like an old favorite: English Westminster. Shades of Keep Calm and Carry On are found in its crisp, bold, clear brew.

This black classic is a blend of Assam, Java, and Ceylon teas. Due to the absence of Darjeeling tea in its mix, English Westminster is defined by its briskness. In fact, when Darjeeling is added to this same blend of teas, the result is the more robust and malty English Breakfast.

In the Beginning. . .

Westminster itself­—the original one, in England—has endured for centuries, lending a sort of permanence or grounding aspect to the tea.

Over 1,000 years ago, Anglo-Saxons constructed a church, “west minster,” on an island in the Thames. Westminster evolved, with Danish ruler Cnut apparently building a palace here sometime in the early 11th century, which was later followed first by Edward the Confessor’s palace and abbey, and then by William II’s “new palace.”

When Henry II moved the Exchequer to Westminster, the site became the seat of English law, and today continues to be the center of the government.

However, because the Palace of Westminster (or the Houses of Parliament) was completed in 1870—and Westminster Hall is over 900 years old—the building is desperately in need of preservation, restoration, and renovation.

Beginning to Begin

A committee has been formed to evaluate the options available to Westminster. But considering (1) there are over 1,000 rooms used by around 2,000 people, and (2) the staggering cost of this monumental project, I think the committee members are definitely in need of some really strong tea! 

(Yes! Westminster for Westminster! )

Anyway, Cheers!

Because today is always a good day to begin—whether it’s those palace projects in your life or those slightly more pedestrian!



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