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Saturday, May 10, 2014
The Internet is an amazing place for sharing information & rediscovering long lost friends. I was recently delighted to spot the name of a daughter of an old friend I had lost touch with many years ago. One discovery led to another as this remarkable young woman's story unfolded before me on the computer screen.
In 2007 Katrell Christie opened an eccentrically charming little tea sop in a friendly neighborhood of Atlanta Georgia.
It was called Dr. Bombay's Underwater Tea Party. As if the name alone or all of these delightful photos, which I borrowed from her website, were not enchanting enough, there was more to her story. Much more!
For the next three years Katrell happily managed her cozy neighborhood tea shop, serving teas & baking delicious sweet treats from her grandmother's recipes. But when a friend invited her to travel to India she had no idea that her life would be changed forever.
There she met three young girls living in an orphanage in Darjeeling, who at the age of sixteen were about to age out of the system. With little education these young women had few opportunities & little hope for the future. Moved by their plight, Katrell promised to help. On her return to Atlanta, & not knowing what to do, Katrell placed a note about her experience along with a jar for donations on her counter.
From that first jar grew a fund raising effort that eventually became The Learning Tea. Since its formation in 2010 The Learning Tea has provided housing & higher education for eleven girls in Darjeeling. With the help of donors & an army of volunteers, they are in the process of opening two more homes to house & educate girls in other parts of India.
The Learning Tea on line shop has products that help to fund this admirable mission. I felt it was appropriate to share Katrell's story today, being Mother's Day. I am sure that Katrell's mother, my old friend, is incredibly proud of her remarkable daughter. But Katrell's story also reminds us to celebrate all women, mothers or not, who nurture & care for others in the spirit of motherhood everywhere.