Sunday, March 20, 2011

Hunting for Treasures

The past four days have given Connecticut a taste of warm, sunny weather. I couldn't resist jumping into my car early Saturday morning and hitting some local Estate sales--another sign that Spring is on the horizon. When I came across a tag sale where clearly an elderly woman had died, I found it fascinating--in an eerie way--to poke through the contents of her entire life. I mosied down to a dingy basement and discovered a treasure trove of glass Christmas ornanents made more beautiful by the patina of time. A woman that wandered downstairs after me wanted the ornaments too, after all they were cheap--$1 a box. Initially, I got nasty with her, but then reasoned it was silly to take them all and got three boxes of the ones I really wanted.

Anyway, I found the fabulous vintage costume jewelry upstairs more worthy of another scuffle. Once again, everything was sold at rock bottom prices--$1 a piece. When I walked away with my loot that set me back all of $10, it occurred to me that all the things we collect over our lives and treasure, are worth very little to others. Perhaps it's because others don't know the history of those momentos.

I was sure those beautiful ornaments had many memorable Christmases behind them and I don't understand why the kids of that dearly departed woman wouldn't want them. At the end of the day, they were fought over by two people that didn't have a clue. But at least we both realized we came across something special that was worth fighting for.

When I got back home, I imagined the entire contents of my home being rifled through by a bunch of strangers. I think of my prided collection of Limoges boxes. I bought one every year I went back to Paris, France. Two of them I got at the St. Ouen Flea Market for a mere 35 Francs a piece, back in the day before Euro currency. I paid more than $100 a for others--like the Eiffel Tower box with midnight blue and gold stars at the bottom. But each one is connected to a specific memory of my time in France. That's what makes each box so special.

Anyway, I'm so happy the warm, sunny weather is here. Welcome Spring!

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