Friday, 11 November 2011

Me and my obsessions or Deeply, Deeply, Shallow

Having just - by way of a celebration - treated myself to a double whisky and ginger, followed by a brief, usually to be avoided, TV viewing of the jewellery channel, I now feel sufficiently emboldened to admit to one of my greater obsessions.

Yes, I do know, it paints a less than pretty picture of who and what I am, but we are all, yes, even you, made up of many component parts.

From the earliest days of my impoverished youth I have loved precious stones, and had anyone been unwise enough to ask me in those days what my wish/dream was, the answer would have been to own a fabulous emerald.

Nothing could have been further from my lifestyle but the secret obsession was always with me.

My first engagement ring was ruby and diamond, very pretty, but  like the engagement, short-lived.

It was returned to my fiance with the refusal to go through with the marriage.

Enough of that!

All through the years of my civil service/opera singing life I studied Smith's" Gemstones" (the 'bible' of the trade) with the idea of one day perhaps working in Hatton Garden.

When, during rehearsals for whatever opera was in progress, the remainder of the chorus would be exchanging the latest gossip, I would have my nose glued to the largely incomprehensible pages of said book.

Further, when I was working in Greys Inn Road, I used to spend most lunch breaks looking in the windows of the fabulous jewellers of hatton garden, almost physically hungering for the more beautiful stones, and emeralds in particular, in their very exclusive displays.

When John and I married we hadn't a bean between us, so there was no engagement ring.  Frankly, I was never very materialistic anyway and didn't mind in the least.

Nowadays, I suppose I could, if I so wished, treat myself to a fairly small emerald, but my hands are the same age as I am, and look even older.  Additionally, I would have nowhere to wear such a thing, so too late.

But........Now and then.......just now and then, I allow myself the luxury of looking at that most beautiful of all precious stones, the Colombian emerald.



  1. I enjoyed this, Ray. Not having hands or wrists or even a neck that would show off jewellry to advantage, I've always contented myself with my rings. My engagement ring was bought secondhand to avoid purchase tax (we were skint too) and is a small, but rather nice, dark sapphire flanked by two of the smallest diamonds imaginable. But they still sparkle very prettily when the light is right.

  2. Glad you enjoyed the brief self-indulgent excursion into my labyrinthian thought processes.
    You're right of course, light is important to precious stones, whatever their size or colour.
    I have a large collection of rings these days, but none of very great value and my hands are so ugly these days that I seldom wear any.
    When I was younger and fatter my hands were rather nice, though I say it as shouldn't. These days they are bony, veiny and better hidden.

  3. You are a girl I can relate to since emeralds are the gem of my dreams! However, my particular obsession has more to do with shoes than with jewels. I have a closet full, and my husband periodically says to me: "So tell me ... when & where do you expect you'll wear all these." :)

    You'd think I'd have a good answer by now. Ah well, obsessions never require such.


  4. Ah but don't you see Kathleen, I don't own an emerald and if I did the obsession would probably die.
    I think it's the nature of obsession to desire only what is unobtainable.
    Once the desired object is within reach reality steps in and spoils things.
    Or is that just my twisted perception?

  5. I think emeralds look good on any age of hand......... go on!

  6. Get thee behind me Freda!
    No, my point, if there was one, was that for me, the Colombian emerald is the creme de la creme of jewels.
    If I could afford a Colombian emerald I would not still be living in my 'briar patch'