What Americans can learn from the soothing British ritual of tea time

Nothing solidifies friendships, soothes heartache, and punctuates the passing days like a nice cuppa

The perfect cuppa.
(Image credit: iStock)

When I started working in London four years ago, I repeatedly made a grave mistake: Whenever a colleague would offer me a cup of tea, I'd politely decline. To me, a mug of hot tea with milk tasted okay, but it was more the kind of thing you use to accompany something actually delicious, like cake. Also, as an American, I just assumed the offer was made out of politeness, not sincerity.

But this awkward exchange kept happening. It happened at work upwards of four times a day. The offers from my English colleagues began to drive me a little bit crazy, and I could that tell my repeated refusal to partake was annoying them, as well. But what could I do? I just didn't feel like a cup of tea. Fair enough, right?

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