The Teahouse

An arbor made of tired wood looms overhead, reaching to half the height of the trees surrounding it, as my car passes under it. It’s dark, but warm texture, welcomes visitors to a safe haven like area. Tires crunch against the gravel as I look out the window to catch a glimpse of the sign hanging from it. There, etched into the wood, it displayed the name ‘Honeysuckle Tea House’.

The tea house is an open air structure that is surrounded by fields of flowers and herbs. When sitting in the main building, which is raised higher above the ground, you can look across the gardens and down at the stage strung with lights below.

Small herbs are placed in square gardens on the right side of the tea house where customers can walk through and feel the warmth from the sun and the smells of the plethora of herbs that make its unique menu. On the left a makeshift stage, playground and maypole keep kids running and laughing as parents watch from the picnic tables in the shade. Kids jump from rock to rock and run across the wooden bridge that reaches across a small pond while older kids throw frisbees in the grassy area off to the side.

The tea house attracts a mix of families with kids and and college students cramming for their next test. Each one has hot or cold tea either sitting on the table or clutched in their hand as they relax in the earthy atmosphere.

As soon as you walk in, there is a big counter with with the day’s special teas posted on chalk boards and cans of loose teas lining the wall behind it. Everything on their menu, from their food to the drinks, is all organic and is made from the plants that stretch around the house. Because of the small batch products that they offer, people rush to get their favorites on the days they have it, and if they run out, everyone has to wait for more of those plants to grow.

If you walk past the stage clothed in fairy lights, there is a flower and herb labyrinth that snakes its way to an off white tent with plastic circular windows. While inside, the thick cloth that surrounds you makes a heat pocket, so sitting in it on a hot day is not a good idea. It reminds me of a place where people would go during the colder months to do a calming yoga session or a meditation session.

Going around to the back of the house, there is a circle blanketed by the leaves of the bushes that surround it, making it a more favorable spot when it’s hot. In the middle there is a pole that connect five or so enos that stretch to the edge of the circle. As the sunlight filters through the leaves you can rock back and forth with the wind with an iced tea in your hand.

You can go to the tea house to relax, drink tea, walk through the maze of herbs, study and even watch a local artist perform with the lights twinkling on the stage. I’ve only ever been during warm days that bathe the grounds in an orange and yellow warmth, so I am looking forward to one day going at night when the nature is dimly lit and the lights sparkle on the small pond that takes up a corner of the property.

Although far away from where I live, I go to the tea house every chance I get. It’s easy to become obsessed with their smooth teas that are made from a variety of herbs that sometimes seem weirdly combined. The light and earthy atmosphere keeps bringing me back, whether I’m gently rocking in an enu or sitting at a table overlooking the garden, that place always brings me peace.