A Tea Addict's Journal


June 28, 2007 · 5 Comments

Moving a good amount of tea is hard work. Last night I packed up my tea cakes as best I could, by first tying them into tongs of varying sizes, then double wrapping them in food bags that are more or less like saran-wraps, I then hauled the tea over to the post office here with my girlfriend helping me. The thing about China Post is that all packages must be inspected before they are sealed — they want to know what’s going into them boxes here in China. At the post office closest to me, the guy who does the packaging said he can’t ship tea like this — too much tea is considered commercial goods, and have to go through the central international post office. Thankfully, that’s not too far away, and we went there — only to discover that there’s no restriction on tea export (as I have guessed). It’ll be insane to tax goods going out of your country, after all.

Most of the time packaging is also sold through the post office. There are almost no stores that will sell you paper boxes here — people reuse old ones, mostly, and if you’re shipping stuff, you buy it from the post office (since you have to bring stuff over for them to inspect anyway, it’s almost pointless to pre-pack anything). Unfortunately, most of the boxes there are not the right sized, so I couldn’t put all my tongs in one or two box, as I have hoped. Instead, I put about two tongs of tea in each box, buffered by other things including my loose teas, canisters, teaware, etc etc…. all in all, it took about 5 boxes to send all my tea related stuff over to Hong Kong. Most of the stuff will then stay in Hong Kong, at least for the near foreseeable future — I think my puerh will age better there than anywhere else, and since I’ll be moving around a lot… it’s better to stick them in one place.

Meanwhile, I am traveling to Shanghai tomorrow, with only one tea that I didn’t pack up — a maocha I bought on one of my very first trip to Maliandao this year. The rest… I’ll have to find my good friends who own more tea than I do to supply me for a few days while I’m there 🙂

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5 responses so far ↓

  • Phyllo // June 28, 2007 at 2:10 pm | Reply

    All the best!  If you need those teas in the US anytime (probably not), I can help you store them at my off-site wine cellar.  No, this is not one of those jokes.  I can hold them for you temporarily until your return to Boston, for example.  I still have lots of space available in the new compartment that I rent.  58′ F, 65 -68% humidity.

  • davelcorp // June 28, 2007 at 11:49 pm | Reply

    Good luck with the shipping and storage. May the tea fair well.
    Let us know of the tea market in Taiwan.

  • MarshalN // June 29, 2007 at 11:46 am | Reply

    Thanks for the offer, but I think I’ll keep it in Hong Kong, at least for now. I must say I’m surprised you have any room left in your storage :p

    I definitely intend to talk about Taiwan as I find out more about it.

  • Phyllo // June 29, 2007 at 4:41 pm | Reply

    I ran out of room, and I had to rent another compartment, which is now *still* half full/empty.

  • MarshalN // June 29, 2007 at 10:27 pm | Reply

    Ah…. the truth comes out 🙂

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