I am meeting a new stranger for tea! I haven't seen Lam since the day I called him an ambulance outside my work - but thankfully he was just fine, and keen to catch up over a cup of tea tomorrow afternoon. Stories to come soon! And thank you all for you patience as I get everything together - more is one the way, I promise!

Some thoughts on this cold, cold night...

Hey everyone!

It's cold here in London - though not nearly as cold as it has been back in Vancouver the last few days! Yikes!

The kettle is nearing a boil - it really is this time. I have cup 11 yet to post about - though, I am saving the entry for a few more days as I ready myself to launch somewhat of an overhaul on the website - more features, more to read, videos even! While it may not seem like much has been happening in the world of tea and strangers, I assure you I am getting ready for some exciting things. Some new strangers have been in touch, and we are working towards setting a date for tea - and some old strangers who I have been in touch with for some time now will, hopefully soon, make an appearance!

Tea in Leeds. Tea in Scotland. Tea in Portugal? Tea in Dubai! Tea in Australia!! It's all on the way friends - it's all on the way...

I've been thinking a lot about what it is I am hoping to accomplish through this adventure I have embarked on. What are my goals? What do I want to take from this personally? What do I hope that everyone who comes into contact with the stories and ideas will learn?

This morning I noticed a comment about the project on a friends blog. A negative comment.

Recently, I have been so caught up in all the positive feedback that I have been getting, that I failed to consider the potential for opposition. The truth is, there will be many people who think what I am doing is silly. When I first read this particular comment - I'll be honest, I was upset. But as I thought about it, it occurred to me that making believers out of those who do not may very well the most important part of all of this. I love meeting those people who agree with me, who believe, just like I do, that the world could do with a little bit more conversation. With that said though, I want to understand where those people, who aren't open to  the idea of being open, are coming from. If you don't wish to join me for a cup of tea and a chat, I can respect that. But if you truly don't believe that human connection through conversation has the ability to break down the social barriers in society, I have to disagree whole heartedly.

So to 'Anonymous' who posted on Becky's blog on November 22nd - if you read this, or my comment on Becky's page - feel free to get in touch. I'm very curious to hear your thoughts on all of this in more detail, if you'd be willing to indulge me of course. Maybe we can even get together for a cup of tea?

I guess I just hope to prove to myself and the rest of the world that the art of conversation is still alive and well. That people are willing to embrace other people. That, while our world becomes increasingly closed off and isolated, we can fight back and share our stories and ideas. And more than all of that - that through our willingness to communicate, we can embrace new friendships, new ideas, new opportunities. Through conversation, comes inspiration. Through inspiration, comes opportunity. And through opportunity, comes change. So let's all get talking and create some positive change in the world.

Can a cup of tea change my life?

I think it already has...

Can a cup of tea change yours?

There is only one way for you to find out...

Meet Julie MacLellan - Cup #10!

It's still Monday.

I've already had 2 cups of tea - with two strangers - who were both kind enough to indulge my crazy idea that the 3 of us should meet.

So what to do then, while drinking tea had me on such a roll...

Have another cup I suppose!

Julie MacLellan and I had been talking for a few weeks now (via tea-mail) - you've now seen her name on here a few times, so you'll remember that she was kind enough to feature my quest for human connection and betterment on her blog, as well as in her newspaper column.

I was particularly excited to meet with Julie, perhaps because my connection to her marks the first interest that a media outlet has taken in what I am up to. And that is not to say that I am after the attention of the media, not at this point anyway – but I do recognize that, with my intentions to share this whole thing with the world in the hope that it might get world thinking a little bit, I will inevitably require the help of the media and their ability to reach a much broader audience that I am able to with my blogs and tweets alone...

I had stuck strictly to black tea that day – so meeting with Julie over a Chai Latte at Starbucks seemed okay; Fitting even, being back in Vancouver where Starbucks line the streets in a frequency that compares to the many pubs and curry take-away's of London.

We tucked into our Chai's and Julie picked my brain a little – curious as to how the idea came to be, and how I was implementing it. It's funny I suppose, being that if I am completely honest about it – this whole adventure started with a gingerbread man. Or, well, the idea of a gingerbread man, going on an adventure. Before long, we replaced the gingerbread man with ourselves, and the adventure was to have tea with the Queen of England – though in an effort to be a little bit more realistic about things, the idea of having tea with ordinary people was born. And now – taking the idea that Stefan and I discussed at long length over many cups of tea, and a the odd pint of Magner's – I am giving it legs, and sharing it with the world – one cup of tea at at time.

With each cup of tea, and each conversation, I find that I understand my own journey even more, and I suppose that makes sense. With each cup, I get a slightly new perspective, some new ideas, and yet another chance to talk about where I stand in all of this. But more than that – with every cup of tea, and every stranger I meet – I realize how beautiful this is in it's simplicity. You see – there are no rules to this business of tea drinking, no specific topics that must be discussed – just two strangers coming together to talk.

Plain and simple.

But from that conversation – anything can happen. And too, just the thought that the conversation at hand could create some change, whether it be for you, or for me, or for the world as a whole – just that idea is enough to make it so...

Julie and I talked on – for some two hours – about whatever came to our minds. And as I always do, I left feeling incredible about yet another connection I had just created with a complete and utter stranger. If I am honest though, it is what Julie wrote on her blog a few days after our meeting that, in hindsight, made our meeting especially memorable.

As Julie has said about my writing – I can't put it better than she has on her website, so I won't even try. Please, if you have the time, give her reflections a read – her writing is refreshing, her story is touching, and her kind words mean the world to me.

With the hope of change stronger than ever within me – I'll get on the plane back to London and continue the hunt for strangers who love to talk, or strangers who just like a good cup of tea. And with each and everyone one of them, I'll continue to believe that something as simple as and ordinary conversation, between two ordinary people, can have some extraordinary results.

Vancouver Is Awesome (.com)

Hello friends.

Thanks to Marianela Ramos Capelo - the story of our meeting, crafted lovingly by Marianela herself, was featured on I encourage you all to check it out, and have a read through Marianela's other adventures with strangers!

When two becomes one... (Cups 8 & 9)

I'm not exactly sure how I feel about starting that one off with a Spice Girls reference – though, I figure being here in the UK, we can let it slide... right? And I guess too, knowing that this particular phrase is a lyric of the 'spicy' variety I may have given away the fact that I used to be a fan. Odd isn't it - the things your 11 year old, male self decides to take an interest in...

And now that I've embarrassed myself - let's get on with it, shall we?

As I mentioned previously, some rather sad circumstances led to a last minute trip back home to Vancouver, Canada. I was feeling torn about it – perhaps because being removed from all the emotions flying around at home was likely making it easier for me to cope with the loss  – but I knew that going back was something I needed to do, if not for myself, then for my family.

A few weeks prior to all of this, I had received two separate emails (or tea-mails, as they shall henceforth be called) - the first was Robyn of Delta, B.C. (who came to me through her boyfriend Chris, an old friend of mine whom I have not seen in some 4 or 5 years now); the second from Marianela – a girl living in Vancouver with a project of her own – to approach one tattooed stranger each day and, pending their cooperation, take a picture of the tattoo and ask for some explanation about it's significance. Neither Robyn or Marianela had asked to have tea, directly anyway – what with the distance and all I suppose – but I knew when I booked my flights late Tuesday night (to fly out Thursday morning) that I needed to take advantage of the opportunity that the sad circumstances had provided me.

I met Robyn first, on Monday afternoon, at a small tea shop on Broadway and Granville, appropriately named 'T'. I was excited to meet with her – in part because it had been so long since I had last seen Chris, and having spent a good portion of my adolescent social life with the guy, I suddenly felt a little bit sad that it had been so long since we has last been in touch – the bigger part of it however was because of the story Robyn had to tell.

You see, Robyn has (whether she realizes it or not) done something a lot more meaningful in her time on this earth than most other people will ever push themselves to. In an effort to support a cause close to her heart, and I suppose too, to honour the memory of a friend she lost under tragic circumstances Robyn spent 8 days of her life trekking to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro (the tallest freestanding mountain in the world!), and in doing so, raised $12,000 for charity. For someone with a strong dislike for anything that closely resembles hiking or camping – this is an especially impressive feat.

As Robyn and I spoke, I couldn't help but reflect upon my own life, and the things I have done with my time. I can admit that most of my actions, however hidden they may be behind good nature and selflessness, offer some degree of personal benefit. This isn't a bad thing, I don't think – we as humans have a necessity to consider potential personal gains in the interest of survival. But I do think that after meeting Robyn, I'd like to do something more to benefit others in need – regardless of the direct benefit to myself. Though, thinking about it now, I suppose that the act of being selfless will inevitably bring the individual in question some personal benefit at some stage – be it related to success and wealth, or simply the good feelings associated with thanks and recognition...

Here is where things get interesting though. At this stage in the conversation, I made a decision to try something completely new to the 100 cups project. Unbeknownst to Robyn, the clock was ticking on our meeting. Marianela – the girl who meets strangers with tattoos – would be waiting for me at 2:00pm not too far up the road at a cafe called 'Pekoe'.

“You don't happen to have any tattoos, do you?”. Robyn looked a little confused, being asked this when the conversation up until this point had nothing at all to do with tattoo's. Lucky for me and Marianela - her answer was yes.

I was stepping out on a bit of a limb here – but I wasn't finished with Robyn yet, and it just didn't feel right to cut the conversation so short in the interest of getting myself one cup closer to one hundred. And anyway, I could make cup number nine just that much more exciting for Marianela, helping her on her own quest to meet strangers – I would be bringing her two instead of just one.

Robyn jumped at the chance, which was cool – somehow, that alone made me feel that in my own way, I was already having and effect on the way that people think. I guess it's not so hard when the people I am meeting tend to have views and ideas similar to my own, but still – I was creating a meeting of strangers that went beyond what any of us had gone into that day expecting, and it felt great.

Robyn and I joined Marianela a short while later – and she seemed genuinely excited to see two of us, rather than just myself. Within minutes, the three of us were talking, sharing the nature of our respective projects, telling stories about our lives, about growing up, and about learning to live in a world that is always evolving and changing (but not always in the best of ways). It became apparently very quickly, the power behind something as simple as speaking about positive change. You see, I believe that anybody who wants to do so, can change the world. All it takes is commitment – and a willingness to be open about your ideas. It takes one person, to share one idea, with someone who agrees with them. The willingness to share, and a commitment to keep on sharing – that is where change comes from. Share your idea with enough people who are willing to get on board and support you – and you might just have a revolution on your hands...

And so the three of us talked, and our commitment to positivity grew. Over the course of three hours, on a fairly typical Monday in Vancouver, three complete strangers, all with our own reasons for doing so, came together over a cup of tea – but as we walked our separate ways that afternoon ( and I know Robyn and Marianela would agree), we left united, somehow. United in the quest to continue bettering ourselves, for it is by doing so that we can influence others to do the same.

It's been said over and over – but for some reason, it seems fitting today to quote the King of Pop, Michael Jackson. The questionable nature of certain aspects of his personal legacy aside, he put it quite well when he sang, 'If you want to make the world a better place, take a look at yourself and make a change'.

I don't know about the rest of you, but the man I see when I look in the mirror lately seems pretty happy there sipping a cup of tea – I think I'll go join him, in fact.

(A little side note: Robyn is a writer, and hopes to craft her thoughts and ideas into a book – if you care to follow her progress or learn more about some of the great things she has done – check out

(On a second side note: Go to to read about Marianela's adventures approaching strangers with tattoos. You can also read her thoughts on our cup of tea there!)

89 cups to go?

You might have noticed that I mentioned having 89 cups of tea left to share with all of you lovely people out there. But that doesn't make sense! The last cup I posted about was number 7!

Well, as it turns out, a short trip back home to Vancouver, Canada was just what I needed to get a bit of energy back...

Soon, you will meet Robyn & Marianela - Cups 8 & 9; Julie MacLellan from the Burnaby Now (how could I not share Cup 10 with her!); and Cup 11 with Justin Sudds & Adam McIssac, two gentlemen who you may very well hear even more about in the future.

I have big plans everyone... big plans. So stay tuned for much more over the next few days. For now though, I'm still trying to balance the jet-lag with the need to make up some lost hours at work. And my apologies that I have yet to post that audio clip from the bus the other night. It's a bit of a look at the other side of the coin, the side where effective communication has broken down - this morning just didn't provide me enough time to get myself back up to speed.

Stay tuned for more!


I got some news two weeks ago that shook my foundations a little - really made me take a look at my life as it is now, at the country in which I am living, at the project I have taken on - and left me questioning whether it is the right thing to be doing with my life...

I packed my bags and left Canada back in January - I guess, more than anything else, in search of something new. And since January, I have discovered a lot, about myself, about the things I am capable of, and about the things I hope to achieve in my life. This project, this desire to reconnect myself with other people and share it with the world in the hope that it just might create a little bit of positive change - it comes at a cost...

You see, for every stranger I meet and spend time with - I deprive myself of a small amount of time that I might normally spend staying in touch with my family, my friends - and of course, spending with my girlfriend. And that's not to say that they all don't understand, because in truth, they are all just as excited about what I am doing as I am. But when my sister called me two weeks ago to tell me that my Grandmother has just passed away - the banks of the river burst and doubt flooded my head for the first time since all of this began.

Here I am, some 5000 miles away from home, holding a 'to-do' list that has 'Write a letter to Baba' haphazardly scribbled at the bottom of it - a letter I have been planning to write her since I arrived here in January, a letter that has seen the bottom of many of my 'to-do' lists, but a letter that I never made the time to write - and now, it's too late.

In that moment of doubt, I did what most 25 year old males would do...

I called my Mom.

What my Mom told me really put things back into perspective, and in a way, having tea with all of you had a lot to do with it. You see, I had written home to the local newspaper not too long ago - if you follow my adventures, you may have already read about this. Julie MacLellan - the arts editor for the Burnaby Now was so taken by the idea, that she decided to share my story with her readers. Without realizing she was doing so, she also shared my story with my own Grandmother. And during her last days in the hospital, Baba held the article in her hand, looked at the picture of me smiling awkwardly, and told my Mom how proud she was of me, and the things I was trying to achieve...

So, Anne Frances Dion - with every sip of the 89 cups of tea I have left to drink, I will think of you and do my best to make you proud.

100 Cups on Twitter!

Hey friends!

I've put the project on twitter - so to all of you who who 'tweet' from time to time (they call us 'tweeps', or so I'm told), follow along and tweet back at me if you like. At some point, I hope to get myself a phone that will allow me to do some tweeting when I am out and about - that way I can send updates while I'm out on the hunt for strangers!

Follow me here.

In other news, I had a few cups during a short visit home to Vancouver this past week - so the project has officially gone international - very exciting! I've got much to share with all of you, but I've got to get myself through this weekend at work first. Expect a whole lot of new stuff in the next few days though, and I hope to have a few cups lined up for next week!

And don't forget to tell your friends!