|Welcome to the Monastery|
In regards to tea, I guess I would qualify as a local barbarian. When I get to hankering for a cup, it's basically tea-bag, sugar, water, cup, microwave (apologies to those offended by this, but what can I say? I also put water in my scotch).
Being as my horizons are expanding quite a bit, ever since visiting PM on a regular basis, I'm intrigued by all this fuss over something I used to think of as just warm brown water. Please take me under your wing and help me understand the mysteries I've been too ignorant to understand, and answer a few simple questions for a poor uneducated slob such as myself.
I was once chastized for not boiling the water in my (feeble) attempt to make tea for a guest. Is there any concrete reason to boil the water, or is that just a ceremonial item?
You spoke nothing of the accessories involved in the process. Is sugar required? What kind? Granulated? Cubed? Can honey be substituted? What about any associated edible thingies (does anybody actually know what a scone is, and how do you capture one?) Should the cup have residual tea stains in it to show it has been broken in, and if so, how many, what color, and should they be in any particular location(s)?
I've got a million more questions, but let me stop here to see if I have not offended too much.
Hoping to understand this strange new thing...