Wednesday, October 01, 2008

The Story of a Ring

As I was getting ready for a night out on the town with Woob, I stopped for a minute to admire my engagement ring and decided that I needed to record the story for posterity. And since I type much faster than I write, I thought this was as good a place as any...

The summer I was 18, I worked two jobs to have money for college expenses etc. During the week I was an intern at NIH and some evenings and weekends I worked at Ann Taylor. The mall that housed said Ann Taylor wasn't a great one at the time and there wasn't much to do during my many fifteen minute breaks other than prowl nearby stores. A few doors down from us was a jewelry store that had a case of antique and consignment pieces. They also had one of the nicest salesmen I have ever met. His name was Murray. On my first pass through the store, I noticed an antique diamond ring with sapphires around it. Murray encouraged me to try it on, but I knew it wasn't in my budget so I declined. Over the next few months I would try the ring on and chat quite a bit with Murray. Eventually I took my mom in to see it. I was thinking that maybe I could make the most out of the dining hall and forgo all pizzas for the entire year just to make it mine. My mother informed me that it was an engagement ring and that I would be a tad loony to spend that kind of money and buy it for myself. Wait for the right man, she said. While my newly discovered inner feminist raged at the notion that I should not buy something like that for myself, my inner economist won out.

I met Woob on my 21st Birthday. A year later, in the fall of my first year living on my own, he told me that he wanted me to move out to California to live with him. And to be his wife. But he didn't want to presume to choose the ring I would wear for the rest of my life. I immediately took him to that little store. He wasn't as entranced as I was and so we looked other places. But that was the ring I wanted and soon he agreed that he hadn't seen anything he liked as much. When we went back to look, there was another ring we both liked too. Much larger and also antique. But it wasn't the ring I had been looking after for those past few years. I couldn't get over the slight odds that this same ring, with all of it's uniqueness, would still be sitting there in the same case all that time. It had to be meant for me. Plus, at the time we were both gradschool drop-outs with no real jobs.

On February 2, 2001, two of my dreams came true - I promised my heart and my life to the man of my dreams and finally got to wear the ring I wanted for so many years. Turns out that my mother liked that other ring for herself, so just maybe it too will find it's way to me someday. But I will be forever grateful to that nice salesman who was kind enough to take an 18 year old girl outside into the sun to see how much a ring could sparkle, and of course to my Woob who took a 22 year old woman out to California to show her how much she could sparkle.

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