How long is a blink or a cup of tea? How do we set our own time?
And how can we – at times – escape the mechanical and always forward thriving setting of seconds, minutes and hours? How abstract and how concrete is time in our everyday? What is more memorable, the ring of the bell or the song of a bird? How can time become quality time? How can time become loose and open ended?
Members from the Colchester Time Bank group have discussed those questions extensively, and proposals range from time hats to new timetables based on personally defined intervals.
Offering a cup of tea is a quintessentially Colchester, and English, way to make someone feel welcome. A tea party can be anything from gathering for a cup of tea and some cake to a more formal and organised event.
The Public Tea Party is shaped around a number of important tea party elements:
Special cups and mugs, in this case an eclectic collection of items found in Colchester's second hand shops.
An oven or stove, where cake is made and water kept warm. For this occasion the clay oven – built in a day – is situated outside and linked to live via a web cam. The oven and tea kitchen will be a central part of the final Colchester Inn.
A special or favourite cake. Recipes will be collected in a designed recipe book, printed in ink made form tea.
A series of public tea parties which invite individuals from very different groups and backgrounds to come together, and extend the tea party into the public realm.
The KNOT CURTAIN combines the well-wishing meaning of Chinese knots with the Chinese custom of showing family photos when welcoming new guests.
The KNICK KNACK CLOUD, a growing collection of Knick Knack contributed by people from Colchester. These objects works as conversation starters, and each one has its own story attached as a recording.