Tea Whisks (Chasen)

After the Japanese Tea Ceremony demonstration, it was time to set up for the students.

Unpacking and preparing at the table top

Here are the ladies unpacking and setting up on the school desks.

Wood boxes used to store tea bowls
The tea bowls were stored and transported in these wooden boxes.

Tea bowls, whisk,ladle, and holding can of matcha in background
I’m told the tea bowls sometimes cost as high as $1000 , but not these bowls brought in for the demonstration.
Scooping matcha into bowls
The tea was prepared at half strength for us, in case anyone was new to the taste of matcha.

Preparing matcha on table top for students

Preparing matcha for so many people at once took some time.

Pouring hot water into tea bowls (desk top)

The same care was used ladeling and whisking here.

Prepared Matcha in bowls on tray

Alrighty, ready to serve.

Student with manju

Manju was served first.

Bowing as students are served tea

Then came the tea, with a bow.

Instruction on how to turn the tea bowl

The students were instructed on proper etiquette and bowl rotation.

Students thanking the host with raised tea bowls

They thanked the host for preparing the tea by saying, “Otemae o choudai itashimasu.”

Then bowls were rotated clockwise two quarter turns.

Students drinking tea

Matcha was consumed, some with very enthsiastic slurps!

Bowls were rotated back counter clockwise two quarter turns.

Students admiring the bowls

Finally, the bowls were admired and appreciated.

Rinsing and drying the tea bowls
Since only half the students could be served at one time, the bowls needed to be washed and dried for the rest of the students.

These bowls may only be rinsed with hot water, no soap.

Sohei Kagami

Mayumi was given the name of “Sohei” to  signify her highly specialized training in Chanoyu.

Sohei (Mayumi) Kagami, Kiyomi Buchanan, Mariko Sawada, Etsuko Tsukano

Left to right: Sohei (Mayumi) Kagami, Kiyomi Buchanan (Sakura Gakuen Sensei), Mariko Sawada, and Etsuko Tsukano

Thank you so much to all these ladies for providing all the background information and allowing us to be a part of the traditional Japanese Tea Ceremony.