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  • It was only when I came to actually read the novel instead of reading about it (and no, I still haven’t finished, since you ask) that I discovered that the tea into which Marcel dips his cake is not common old Indian or even China tea but that quintessentially French beverage, lime blossom tea. A friend told me that traditionally-minded French people still gather the flowers to make it on Bastille Day, July 14th. I don’t suppose Proust had this in mind, but it does add yet another layer of subtlety to the whole episode.