Updated: Jun 8, 2018
I am not sure I was ever one, but I have discovered that it is never too late!
A packet of organic Happy Hippy Tea from Steenbergs of Yorkshire piqued my curiosity immediately, not only because it looked so very pretty, but also because of its nostalgic pledge of a relaxed, past age and an alternative approach to life.
The list of ingredients is short: chamomile, mint, rose. Chamomile is popular for its tranquilising properties and mint for its beneficial effect on the digestive system. What about the whole rose buds in the mix? Rose petals feature as a garnish in Middle Eastern cuisine but I was certainly not familiar with rose's presence in an infusion. Steenbergs describe their tea as uplifting for the nerves and spirit - happy hippy indeed - but I have always found chamomile to be stimulating rather than calming and very prone to keeping me awake all night.
I brewed a couple of spoonfuls of Happy Hippy Tea in a mug which I took out into the sunshine to await the arrival of the promised happiness. The first taste was of chamomile with its characteristic mustiness, followed by a hint of astringent mint. And then magic happened. I suddenly picked up a third flavour which started flowing in and around and through the other two, transporting me instantly into an English summer garden. It was not an aroma or perfume, it was a delicate but distinct essence which filled my palate and seemed to float up into my brain – and much to my surprise, I found myself feeling increasingly soothed, serene and at peace with the world, which was certainly not due to the chamomile. It can only have been the roses and their happy hippy flower power.
Steenbergs also do a Happy Hippy Flower Salt which I am very excited to try. While too much salt is bad for blood pressure, I wonder whether the soothing, relaxing flowers will counter-balance this effect? I shall find out soon enough.