I know now that when offered a cup of tea by a Bedouin, that although they will keep on filling up your cup, it is acceptable to refuse after the third. I did not, however, know this at the time, and so a very long afternoon of cross-legged tea drinking ensued. And unfortunately, in the desert, there is no bathroom to be found!
More fortunate though, is that the tea itself is delicious – a blend of dried wild sage, cardamom pods, cinnamon bark, black tea leaves, & a decent amount of raw sugar, brewed together slowly in a kettle over a fire.
It’s easy to blend at home – go heavy on the sage and sugar, lighter on everything else, and brew for around 10 minutes over medium heat. It makes a lovely aroma while it steeps, and has an almost narcotic quality, soothing the senses, and conjuring desert caravans, date palms, and afternoons under the shade of canvas, away from the lulling intensity of the desert sun.