Two weeks ago, a Russian woman walked into the Louvre and wandered her way towards the Denon wing on the second floor. Once she arrived to the jam-packed hall (crowded because the first Sunday of each month is free admission to the public), she did something only two other people in known history have dared to do: damage the Mona Lisa.
She reached into her purse and hurled an object over the heads of onlookers, hitting the bulletproof glass and shattering the object. All the while, Ms. Lisa stared back impassively and kept on smirking behind her impervious barrier.
This story would not be noteworthy to this Sommelier in the least, if it wasn’t for the fact that the assailing object was none other than a teacup. Considering how long it took for tea to overcome the negative association with the Boston Tea Party, the last thing that good tea needs is to be an unwitting accomplice in the defacing of one of the world’s most beloved works of art.
Tea, after all, is not a weapon, as (it seems) the good Mona Lisa seems to be trying to point out to us. Her unwavering grin at her attack reveals that she knows how her attacker got it all wrong: tea, in fact, is a healer, a protector, and more, thanks to all its amazing health benefits. And, on top of that, its delicious taste can send us into a state of sublimity, the same as any great work of art.
So please, my dear reader, to avoid being arrested like our Russian friend, keep your teacups where they belong – full of tea awaiting your thirsty mouth, and away from priceless Italian masterpieces.