Some of my favourite things about working with the elderly is making them laugh, having a good old sing song together and generally providing opportunities to help them feel full of life again. As an activities co-ordinator and floating carer, one of the ways I ensure this is that on the days I am asked to serve the Afternoon Tea I often call them sir and madam and we share a little giggle as I treat a simple serving of an afternoon cuppa like a little cafe! They love it!
Nothing quite says British (especially for the older generations) like a hearty cup of tea and piece of cake does it? It is something very much looked forward to by many and is one of life’s little pleasures for them!
I am no different though, and it must be part of our British make up, because I flipping love a good afternoon tea (minus the tea part – just the cakes mainly – am I even British?). And, with the glorious weather of this past week, for me thoughts were turned to proper tea parties in the garden – the delicious jam and cream scones and little sandwiches…fancy pop and fun afternoon tea parties with the family! I hoped I might have the opportunity this summer to throw Alice a tea party like that for her 4th Birthday, but I suppose we will have to wait and see on that front how big it is (I guess we can still do one just the 5 of us!).
The Great British Guide to Afternoon Tea
I know many of my readers are located outside of the UK and perhaps are rather curious about this age old tradition of our Nation? Well let me tell you this – nothing is more quintessentially British and joyful than afternoon tea – that much is clear, and Age Co have but together a wonderful guide to not only help us see some of the best spots around the UK to enjoy this tradition together, but also a guide on etiquette and a quiz too; it is The Great British Guide to Afternoon Tea and offers some of the best spots to enjoy this British custom.
Whether it is served in an independently-run cafe in a quaint village or in one of Britain’s most reputable hotels, afternoon tea remains one of the most favoured outings for people across the country (and is a big one for tourists too). If you’re celebrating a special occasion or you simply want to enjoy some of Great Britain’s culture, then afternoon tea delivers the perfect setting for a range of desires, chat and bringing people together. And so, whilst our current and temporary state of lock down might prohibit the joy of a country drive and stop off at a cafe for a delicious afternoon tea, or celebrating with afternoon tea at a fancy tea room, it doesn’t need to stop us doing what we enjoy most!
Why not get creative and stiffen that upper lip a little like our fore-bearers and, in true British style throw your kids, elderly parents (drop it all off in a box for them) or just yourselves a good old tea party to weather the storm! You could even take the quiz together for some fun and join in the conversation about the best way to make tea on Facebook, using #TeaTimeEtiquette.
I see daily the simple pleasure of an afternoon cuppa and piece of homemade cake to individuals in their late years of life. Don’t underestimate the simple joys of British culture, especially in these worrying times. You can spread the joy in your family or by dropping it on the doorstep with your neighbours and by simply serving up some afternoon tea, a piece of homemade cake and a lot of comfort all round! Then why not get planning where you might go for the real thing when this is all over – I know I am!