A Memory from Durham

There is something particularly peaceful about making a cup of loose leaf tea. It makes the process slower, in both the physical and figurative sense, and somewhat more special. For me, it always resurfaces memories of my time in Durham a couple of years ago. Living in a crumbling house on the cobbles behind the cathedral and studying in a Hogwarts-esque college building, my life was the epitome of cosy and slow. Waking up, I would peer out of my window to see students rushing in and out of college buildings, and tourists wandering around, admiring the picturesque buildings on the Bailey. With grey skies and fallen leaves, the atmosphere was autumnal and idyllic in every sense.

 Nestled in the north of England with few friends and a highly introverted nature, weekends were spent exploring the quaint city centre before coming home to cosy afternoons in my old-fashioned room. I would make a cup of apple & elderflower tea and settle in for a few hours of reading, catching up on my favourite shows and painting with watercolours. Looking back at those unspoiled weekends, I strangely miss the little town that was my home for almost a year. While these moments were special and ones that I will always remember, the rest of my time in Durham wasn’t so seamless. I struggled living in such a tiny – almost claustrophobic – place, missing the open-minded personalities of my friends back home and the general lack of judgement that I became accustomed to during my undergraduate years in Bristol. Durham was a whole different world that I never somehow managed to grasp.

Standing in the kitchen of my family home two years later, these memories resurfaced as I poured hot water over a fresh scoop of tea leaves, taking me back to those slow weekends of self-discovery. I’m happy that I had the chance to live in such an idyllic place – and that I somehow made it through the second half when the cosiness and quaint charm of the city began to simmer away, like the heat rising from a cup of tea on a cold, crisp autumn afternoon.

Is there anything in your everyday life that takes you back to a particular memory?




  1. 17th September 2017 / 5:43 pm

    Your writing is so beautiful Milena! Durham has been a place I’ve always heard is lovely and now it’s on my list of place to visit. Drinking hot chocolate by a fire is something so simple but always reminds me of cosy evenings, especially the memories of being at my grandparents house.

    • blushinglately
      17th September 2017 / 7:15 pm

      Thank you so much, Natasha! I would very much recommend visiting Durham as it is so, so cosy. After seeing your post about York, I think you would definitely love Durham, too! That sounds like a really lovely memory ☺️ There is something really special about grandparents’ houses!

  2. Angelika Grigorjeva
    19th September 2017 / 9:39 am

    I was so close to almost ending up in Durham to study Marketing, but the very nature of being secluded has put me off and I ended up choosing something polar opposite and now i’m studying in the heart of a city… Loose leaf tea is something that is close to my heart also, we used to drink it all the time in my childhood in Lithuania so it definitely brings back a memory or too.

    p.s. your writing is absolutely beautiful!


  3. 27th September 2017 / 5:34 pm

    This is such a beautifully written and cosy post, your memories of Durham sound perfect! I’ve never been there before but I would love to visit one day, I can just imagine it would be perfect to visit in the Autumn months. 🙂 x

    Kayleigh | anenthusiasmfor.co.uk

  4. 28th September 2017 / 10:43 pm

    This is the most beautifully written thing I have read in a while! Your words convey the atmosphere of the place so well, and of course, the experience of drinking loose leaf tea 🙂 Funny because I nearly went to Durham to study but changed my mind at the last minute and decided to apply for a different degree at a different place.. Hope you’re having a great week so far!

    Maria | http://whatismaria.com

  5. Diana
    2nd October 2017 / 11:38 pm

    This tea looks delicious and I feel the same about loose leaf tea. It’s perfect for colder months, and there’s something so lovely about making a cup of loose leaf tea, it just feels better for some reason haha xx


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