Technicalities of Tea
MARINE CORPS AIR STATION IWAKUNI, Japan -- The Omotesenke Tea Ceremony Club taught participants the procedures of a Japanese tea ceremony during a Cultural Adaptation Program at Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, Oct. 17, 2015.
Residents received manjus, a sweet Japanese treat, and green tea while they learned the importance of the decor of the room and the traditional way to drink tea in Japan.
Some may think “why do I need a class on drinking tea?” Though the task seems like a simple thing in America, drinking tea is a 14 step process in Japan with deep ties to virtues such as unity, respect, tranquility and harmony, and also correlates with the seasons.
Participants agreed that the instructions were very helpful and gave them confidence should they ever attend a real tea ceremony.
“I had no idea what goes on during tea ceremonies in Japan but I have a much better idea now thanks to this quick little class,” said Erica Edwards, a resident at MCAS Iwakuni. “The culture is so different here in Japan that any insight we can get to help us assimilate is great.”
The instructors also expressed enthusiasm while teaching the residents who they showed high interest in their culture.
“I am glad for the opportunity to teach them about this old tradition of ours,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class Yoshiharu Kishi, an aviation mechanic with the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force and leader of the Omotesenke Tea Ceremony Club. “It makes me happy to see others take an interest in a culture outside of their own.”
The next tea ceremony is scheduled for Nov. 8, at the Kikko Tea House in Iwakuni City, Yamaguchi Prefecture.
“The tea ceremony is open to everyone,” said Kishi. “Please come have a drink and relax.”