In the past two weeks I’ve gotten halfway to the 2nd best morning routine I have ever had. About a year ago I use to get up some time between 5 and 6 AM. I took a shower and meditated for five to ten minutes. I would have meditated longer but I didn’t have the endurance for it. After meditation I grabbed 2 books from my room and went to our kitchen. I’d pull out some “Ghazaltain tea”, a tea I had my roommate and/or his Sudanese friends bring me back from Sudan. Why imported tea you might ask? Because Lipton is the fakest crap I have ever tasted.

I’d reach for a teaspoon from the drawer and take 1 to 2 scoops of tea and place it in a small, open-faced pot. I then add a 1/5 of a cup of water to the pot and place the pot on the stove. Turn the heat to High. I reach into the fridge and grab my Lactaid milk, which I know my roommate drinks from even though he doesn’t support me in keeping it stocked. I pour 4/5 of a cup of milk into my mug and proceed with my process. I wait until the small amount of tea and water start to boil and then pour in the milk. After pouring the milk I reach for a book and pretend that I can read it while watching my milk tea slowly come to a boil.

Actually, it’s not “milk tea” that I’m making, it’s “chai”. This is my definition of chai, I don’t care what Starbucks serves.

After a few minute the chai comes to a boil and I turn the heat off. I wait a minute or so and wait for the chai to settle from boiling. I reach for a strainer and place it over my mug and slowly pour the chai in the mug. From time to time I screw up and the chai spills over the counter. I don’t get mad about making a mess. Life is messy, this is only a reflection of what life is all about.

After cleaning up the mess, I mix some honey in my tea and take a seat at our dining table. I peek over at the oven clock, and start reading from 1 of the 2 books I pulled out. I give myself about twenty minutes of reading from book one. All throughout I sip from my chai. After twenty or so minutes I grab book two and do the same thing. The chai is cold and dull by the time I get to book two, but that’s ok. Although I can never remember to, I should be thankful that I can have a morning routine like this.

After reading from book two I head back to my room, get dressed, and head out to work.

For the past 2 weeks here in NYC I’ve been able to wake up between 7 and 8 AM, make some tea, and read from a book. So far these past two weeks I have finished reading

I have wanted to read these books (and many others) for a long time but I never have the time, or so I tell myself. I always come across interesting books but I’m always booked with things to do. By sitting myself down and reading in the morning, I have the clarity and patience to page through a book. While the sun is still rising, birds are chirping (in Atlanta), and traffic is slowly picking up out in the streets, my mind is relaxed and life’s usual worries have yet to be awakened. In this period I can actually read a book.

P.S.1: I didn’t create this routine. I adapted this routine from a manager who told me they read 100+ books a year, a self described bibliophile. I asked how in the world someone can read 100+ books a year. One of the times my manager reads is in the morning before the morning commute.

P.S.2: In the beginning I say the ‘2nd best morning routine’. My best morning routine actually took place during the summer of my sophomore year in high school but that’s a story for another time.

P.S.3: In this post, I’m trying to narrate my morning routine in the same way Stephen King or other fiction writers tell a story, scene by scene…