Although I live in sunny San Diego I can’t help get lost reading classic Gothic novels over many cups of tea. One of my favorites is “Jane Eyre” by Charlotte Bronte. It does help to have an overcast, chilly winter day here in southern california but I will read any of the wonderful Gothic novels or watch the adapted film versions anytime. I love “Rebecca”, “Pride and Prejudice”, “Wuthering Heights”, you name it.
For some reason, I am attracted to big, drafty, gloomy places. While in France in the Loire Valley I really felt at home in the enormous hunting lodges and chateaus of the Kings and Queens. The hearths were absolutely massive and one of my favorite things was looking out through caged windows way up in these secret little rooms.
In the blog www.austenprose.com they describe that the novel’s gloomy, atmospheric tone was perfectly embodied in the film, directed by Cary Fukunaga in Haddon Hall in Debyshire built atop a limestone outcropping and one of the oldest houses in England standing in for Thornfeld Hall. The whole place has that dark, Gothic, masculine feel especially in the attic scenes.
One thing I must say that the characters in the film drink alot of tea in those dark, drafty rooms. I think a tea party with a theme like Jane Eyre would be really fun. The tricky part would be to find the costumes. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have an elaborate tea service, made with delectable treats and to either read aloud different parts of the novel or to watch the lastest version of the film with Mia Wasikowska and the dashing Michael Fassbender, while dressed in our finery. How do we fit into the dresses with the impossibly small waists. Having tea and crumpets certainly won’t help. We will just have to find low carb versions of treats to eat.
Don’t we all love the tale of the spirited governess who finds true love in a eerie classic medieval castle with heart stopping romance. Jane Eyre is the ultimate underdog, a poor orphan against unbelievable odds, whose love and determination redeem a hero wracked with torment.
We can all identify with the themes that are relevant today: women’s struggle for equality, self-realization and the satisfying experience of true love. Overall, appealing to our hearts and minds.
Syrie James, the author of “The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Bronte”, explains that Mia truly inhabits the role, beautifully protraying Jane’s sense of self-respect, integrity and restraint as well as her passion and vulnerability. Although, she wished Mia had thrown herself a little more at Mr. Rochester’s character. She also felt that Michael Fassbender was inspired casting. She says, “He embodies Mr. Rochester with the ideal blend of charisma and sinister brooding, while at the same time allowing glimpses of his underlying desperation and wounded depths of his soul. When Jane and Rochester finally admit their love for eachother, it is romantic, exciting with sparks flying. As this is the favorite part of the story for me, it was far too short.” I have to agree. I loved their chemistry and could have used a longer love scene.
Since this is a blog about tea I will be writing all about different type of tea parties, activities to do a tea parties, the dress, etc… Reading about special tea houses across the globe, intimate, lavish is something that I also like to do since I have a love of travel so I will probably be reporting about some of that.
Would love to hear about fun tea parties you have been to and great tea houses you have visited, the food they served, the customs, etc… Please share your thoughts and ideas.