Two things weather the storms of life – Love and Diamonds
Volumes of stories have been told at New Orleans jewelry counters over the years; it is as if the diamonds and gemstones I deal in are recorders of history – my customers’ rites of passage.
Engagements, birthdays, graduations, anniversaries, as well as the difficult times such as divorce, death and inheritance often require my expertise as a jeweler. Jewelry is arguably the most spiritual of all physical products in the marketplace this is true for all races, religions, cultures and periods in history.
My job description often falls somewhere between a priest, bartender and party planner, currently writing the final pages of my first book in which I recall many jewelry stories. One story many years ago is of a young man that struggled with walking and slurred his speech. It made it difficult to understand as he purchased a ring for his girlfriend.
Months later his older sister (a saint and prominent attorney) would find her way into the jewelry store to thank me…she told me his story – a brain injury (automobile accident) and how he had sold his television to purchase the ring for his girlfriend.
I put together a selection of rings for the man to choose from… the sister realized his money would not have covered the cost of the ring chosen and she wanted to pay me the balance. With laughter and tears I embraced his loving sister and explained that I had earned something you can not buy with money.
Another…..Just this week one of my very best customers (friend) surprised me with a bottle of champagne, picking up a long awaited purchase. A stunning diamond necklace definitely not for everyday wear but one of those “special occasions only” jewelry items (50th birthday gift), we popped open the bottle (the cork went flying) we toasted and enjoyed the bubbly.
Later, I reflected on the many events in my customer’s lives, personalfamily events that through jewelry I had been a part. Each of the many fine jewelry items over that period represent chapters in their life, as if the diamonds, rubies, emeralds, pearls and gold were “story keepers” – that is what makes these stones and metals – “precious“.