While Australians seem to really care about their beer, the British love their tea. I have commented before that you cannot watch British TV shows without being impressed by the major role that tea plays in them. People are always either drinking or making tea and as soon as anyone enters someone else’s home, even if it is a police officer investigating a crime, the first question is whether they would like a cup of tea. They seem to drink it by the gallon.
I asked a colleague of mine who hails from England if that portrayal was an exaggeration with writers exploiting a cultural trait for effect, and he said absolutely not. He said that this is exactly what happens and that although he is now in the US, he has at least ten cups a day and makes it in his office.
Here is a clip from 1941 during World War II that carefully describes the steps that must be taken to make a good cup of tea, especially if one has to make large amounts of it for offices or troops or people in shelters. The man who gives the instructions is impressive for the seriousness with which he outlines the steps, as if he were describing what one needs to do in the wake of a nuclear attack or a bombing raid. Clearly making tea is not something to take lightheartedly.