One Hundred Miles, One Hundred Years: A journey in poetry to tea

Did you all pick up on lasT nighT’s hinT? Get iT? The hint was “T”–because today was a day for tea!

Jennifer found an ad in Tea Time magazine about a special tea event–“The Ladies of Downton Abbey Fashion Show and Buffet Tea!” We were very excited, because it was combining two of our favorite things. We’ve enjoyed formal tea ceremonies in the past–both Japanese and English–and we love both styles. It’s so fun to dress up and go to high tea, but when we get to dress up in historical styles, that ups the “fun” factor immensely! (“You’re driving 100 miles away…to drink tea?” Jeremiah asked me. Haha. Oh, Jeremiah, it’s so much more than that…)

Jennifer and I decided to take our mom to this tea event for Mother’s Day, and despite the distance, my dad volunteered to drive us so we could relax. We even played word games in the car. 😉 We all dressed in Downton-era styles, and I was impressed with our efforts, especially considering we already owned all these pieces. (It does help that we gravitate towards historically inspired clothing in general.)

The food was amazing! My favorite item was the apricot cheesecake, but everything was delicious. They also had a wide offering of different teas and punches, all served on antique-style crystal trays and matching crystal tea cups. The mansion itself was gorgeous, preserved in 19th-century styling with original furnishings–even the light bulbs were original! Wow, I guess they just don’t make them like that anymore…

The fashion show was also delightful. As you can see from the program below, the event was extremely well-organized. We got live music as we got our food, followed by an overview of the mansion. Then the fashion show began, divided by period/Downton season, from 1912 through the 1920s. The outfits were beautiful! Some of them were even originals from the time period. We took lots of pictures, but here are a few samples.

I thought about today’s NaPoWriMo prompt in the car:

Your prompt for today is simply to take a walk. Make notes — mental or otherwise — on what you see on your walk, and incorporate these notes into your poem. A bit more serene and observational than yesterday, and hopefully a nice, calming poem to begin your weekend with.

I realized the spirit of the prompt kind of reflected the journey we were taking today. (I also realized I probably wouldn’t be fitting in a walk with my 1910s-period clothing today.) The whole journey seemed symbolic: we were traveling 100 miles away, 100 years back in time to take part in a custom we loved as much as our ancestors probably did. We were traveling away from the urban into the rural, away from the developed into nature.

“100 Miles, 100 Years”
By: Amanda K. Fowler

Draped in pearls,
hair covered
with feathers and sequins,
we begin our journey.
100 miles away
from everyday congestion,
buildings and people
the road stretches out,
inviting us,
and the horizons turn
to brown strips
awaiting buds,
flecked with hard wildflower stalks
napping in the sunlight.

And by the time we arrive,
we haven’t just traveled
100 miles,
we’ve traveled 100 years,
sipping tea like our ancestors,
sitting in their chairs,
wearing their styles,
surrounded by family
and new friends
on a Saturday afternoon.
Maybe some things
never change.


4 thoughts on “One Hundred Miles, One Hundred Years: A journey in poetry to tea

  1. Pingback: Happy Mother’s Day | Jelly-Side Up

  2. Pingback: Celebrating My Sister: Why She is My Hero + Her Birthday | Jelly-Side Up

  3. Beautiful Blog post ladies-Karen and I love what we do and especially when we make our guests happy. Stepping back in time is fun! I really loved your poem. Check your email for an answer from me about modeling this year. Hug, Nancy Perzo (aka-The Tea Ladies, Inc.)


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