2019 Firsts


This is the first time we’ve let you know about what’s going on in Warsaw this year, so here is a collection of some of our firsts in January 2019.

First Tea on New Year’s Morning

After the eight of us gathered in the dark the guests entered the tea room at 7 AM to welcome the new year.

The room was prepared for laying the charcoal and once all the guests were settled the fire was built.

Next we shared some food.

When finished we left the room.

After the hosts prepared the flowers and thick tea we re-entered and shared both thick and thin tea.

We’ve been doing this intimate gathering at sunrise on the 1st for a few years now and it always fills us with warmth of spirit and inspirational energy for the coming year. Thanks to everyone who made this a special morning.

Hatsugeiko – first practice of the new year

Ula-sensei has been making sure everyone has a bite to eat before tea lately, even at keiko. So a small tray of food was served.

Then we continued with our regular practice of various thick and thin tea.

Thanks to our dedicated students for their continued diligence and patience.

Hatsudate – New Year celebration at Warsaw University

Every year the students of the Urasenke tea course at Warsaw University get to drink thick tea in celebration of the new year.

It’s a nice chance for them to take part in some aspects of the new year celebrations.

Afterwards several of the group’s regular students got to take their first tries at daisu temae.

It was great having them come to help with the university students.

Hatsudate at the Japanese Ambassador’s residence

For the opening of the celebratory year commemorating 100 years of open diplomatic relations between Japan and Poland we were asked to make tea for the guests in attendance at the Japanese Ambassador’s residence.

We made tea simultaneously in the tea room and at the misonodana table.

It was a little too busy to take any pictures while making tea, but here is most of our team.

It’s always a pleasure to work with the Ambassador and the staff of the Embassy.

Hatsudate for our group and friends

Each year it’s our pleasure to invite those whom we work with and rely on for a new year celebration, in the tea fashion.

Staying up late preparing food and sweets is a regular task before any tea gathering, especially when you’re serving many dishes to many people.

Ganmodoki (imitation goose – because it’s tofu based) for the soup. The guests, especially the Japanese ones, seemed to enjoy it. Thank you Ania!

Thanks to everyone for all the help.

The first seki, or group of guests, doing haiken of the tea utensils.

Guests enjoying some sake with their food.

“Repairing” the fire for the second seki.

Sweets for the thin tea, pines and cranes.

Yokoe Masato-sensei was a guest during the second seki, but had come from giving shamisen lessons and was so kind to play a few songs for us.

Once we served all our invited guests we did the same for ourselves under the full moon.

Looking forward to many more tea events.

Have a great year everyone!