I must admit, it is not really inherent with me – perseverance. At times I tend to give up too easily.
But recently I started an experiment, with four of my contaminated clay teapots (see previous blog). I have already boiled the teapots with bleach, then rinsed and scoured them in water, boiled them in water, rinsed and scoured them again, and again, and again, boiled them in water and White ash, then repeated the rinsing and scouring sequence three times. I think most of the formaldehyde is now gone, they no longer leave a sticky feeling to my skin, and the clay feels soft and cool again, but the tea is just too dry; I cannot drink it. So now – I experiment with a rehabilitation plan; for one month I daily soak them in fine tealeaves and hot water. First day in a nice light fragrant oolong, next day with an aged Liu Bau, next day the small pots I use for rock tea were soaked with Wuyi Rou Gui. Still I dare not drink the brew, not yet prepared to face the result.
At the end of this period I will bring them to my teacher, to have them evaluated. Have they recovered or not, can they once more make the finest of teas, or are they just useless, fine objects to look at and learn from? One more month of daily care, and perseverance.