Kamiko Graceson


Intern #168

Instagram: @ athenetarot 

Tea has always been a part of my life, and a part of my culture. 

On my mum’s side of the family, we’re British… drinking tea is an integral part of the day. If something bad happens… have a cup of tea… if something good happens, have a cup of tea… if nothing happens… have a cup of tea! 

My dad on the other hand, wouldn’t touch a tea bag with a 10 foot barge pole, loose leaf tea only. He’s the one that first introduced me to different tea’s such as green, white and oolong, as well as how to forage in the garden and woods for herbal teas. 

I’ve since learnt to appreciate both quick and easy tea bag cup of tea’s as well as the higher quality loose leaf. 

To me, tea has always been a way to connect with others, and share emotional burdens. However, a few years ago I started to research the physical benefits of tea. From there I fell down the rabbit hole into the glorious world of teas and tisanes. 

I quickly realised that it wasn’t enough to simply research and gain this knowledge for myself, but I wanted to share it with the world. Thus, my dream was born… to have my own tea house, and share knowledge about tea and herbs with everyone and anyone. To create a safe space for others to come learn and heal. 

Why Obubu

It wasn’t enough to simply learn about tea by reading books and articles, I wanted hands on experience.

I wanted to see and learn everything I could, from plant to cup. How it’s grown, how it’s cultivated… how many different ways there were to process and brew the same leaves. 

I looked at multiple tea farms in multiple countries. Obubu’s values and ethos closely aligned with my own, focusing on education and community (communitea). After reading their website and intern handbook, I knew this was the right place for me. 

My time at Obubu

I’ve loved my time here at Obubu. Every second! 

I’ve loved the knowledge and education I’ve gained on Japanese tea, tea ware and tea culture. 

I’ve loved the people I’ve met, from the staff to my sempai’s and fellow interns and even the wider tea community here in Wazuka. 

I’ve made both friends and business connections. Some people have changed my life, and others I’ve changed theirs. You’ll never know who you’ll meet working on a tea farm, but the people who’ve been part of my journey, thank you so much. You’ve given me wisdom, different perspectives and things to ponder. 

I’ve met people who’ve challenged me, supported me, and some who’ve held a mirror up to me. I’ve grown so much over the last 3 months… spiritually, emotionally and mentally. 

Before coming to Obubu, I had a dream, and a rough direction. Meeting people from all walks of life, all areas of business has helped me focus and finesse my plans, my dreams and my future. 

Before, I knew the end goal, but the path I needed to take was scary and unknown. I felt afraid to even take the first few steps. Now, I’m ready to run head first into my destiny. Ready to create my own space and tea community. 

What’s next

Obubu was the start of my tea journey in Asia, next up other tea producing countries. I want to learn all I can about the camellia sinensis plant, and how other countries produce their tea. I want to build and expand upon my knowledge, and keep meeting amazing people within the tea community. This isn’t goodbye, Obubu, more of a see you later