Tea Boy

tea boy

What is a tea boy?  This was a new term to me…but I came across it reading one of my favorite detective series: Maisie Dobbs by Jacqueline Winspear.   This series takes place in pre-WW II Britain and many of the characters lived and served in WW I so there is a lot of history and terms used that were particular to the time.  Anyway, a tea boy is a low-level recruit or office helper (Girl Friday in US?) whose primary job is making tea for the more senior staff.  For tea people, like me and maybe you, this would be a fabulous job!  Louid Niera posted this definition in Facebook:


A teaboy is usually a young boy working for a company to learn the trade. They were called ‘teaboys’ because their most important tasks was to make a good morning cup of tea for the rest of the workers. Not exactly a go-fer, but doing small jobs (cleaning, cooking, etc.) was part of his work in addition to learning the main trade.w that tea is becoming more discovered in America


When you think about the Chinese and Japanese history and their reverence of tea, with elaborate preparation rituals, it’s kind of remarkable that the British accorded this casualness to it.  Thank goodness we are learning more about tea and all its dimensions–finally giving it the respect it deserves here in the western world.  I will gladly be the tea girl in the office.


BTW:  If you haven’t tried the Maisie Dobbs series—it’s wonderful!