In winter of 2006, while Guisepi was living in his truck in Hollywood, working as a video editor he accidentally stumbled upon the power of serving free tea. He recalls here:

"Serving free tea can create change? Yeah, right. I didn't realize the impact I had while first doing this, but over time it became clear. For three months in Hollywood I would cook dinner and tea on my tailgate on Hollywood Boulevard after getting off work. Being a person who loves interaction with all sorts of people, I offered a little bit of food and a lot of tea to anyone who was hungry for sustenance or conversation.

"This small offering made to people was enough to create friendships between all classes and colors, spark conversations on hundreds of topics, put a human face on those involved, and create a strong community out of a mish mash of people and cultures right there on the pavement. Whether there was a Japanese tourist or a tattooed gangster with a shopkeeper or a Nazi punk, everyone related; everyone was comfortable sitting at the same level drinking the same warm beverage, feeling just as comfortable as the next person. Everyone shared what they had, be it food, ideas or conversation.

Serving tea with friend Ali to middle schoolers in Healdsburg, CA
For more photos, click here

"Serving free tea became a norm for me while on the road in places like the Tenderloin in San Francisco, hot springs in Oregon, the street in Friday Harbor, WA, the beaches of Northern California, in the parking lots of national forests and parks, and at music events. With each tea I served, oftentimes with the help of friends, the more I realized how much impact it was having on people. People were excited not only with the acts of generosity, the community created, and the dialogue exchanged, but with the encouragement and inspiration to do similar things in their own lives, whether it be passing on the generosity, seeing through appearances and befriending strangers, or sparking conscious conversations with friends, new and old."

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In 2008, Guisepi bought a short school bus to turn into a mobile free tea house. For the past eight years it has done its job while traveling North America and getting a complete sustainable makeover. To learn about the tea bus see the Tea Bus page. We call it a "green" tea house!

The Free Tea Party has changed from a truck to a bus, and from Hollywood to elsewhere, and with this evolution has come an evolution in the preparation and organization that is needed to do something of the such. We invite you to participate in this change by emailing your thoughts and ideas or by supporting the tea bus in some way.



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