07 September 2011

Meant to be getting ready for a buying trip (but actually phaffing about)

Here I am at my inaugural Blog, and I find I am the literary equivalent of tongue-tied.  And yet I have opinions on pretty well everything, so I’m sure I’ll warm up in due course and begin rabbiting on.

Right now Doug and I are supposed to be preparing for our second buying trip to England and France for the year.  Haven’t packed, haven’t turned the house into even approaching habitable for our house-sitters, haven’t looked at the pre-trip To Do List.  But what the heck, we’ve got 12 days and an awful lot can (and will have to) get done in that time.  But I’ve booked the flights, the van and most of the accommodation, and I’ve got a detailed itinerary decided upon, so the important stuff is done.

This time we’re stopping off in Abu Dhabi on the way and we haven’t been there before so we’ll see if it’s more interesting than Dubai, which is just down the road and one of the boringest cities we’ve visited in recent times.  Good if you like shopping in modern malls, but hey I’m an antiques dealer, I like exotic markets and fabulous treasures.  I want to get lost in souks and deal with dodgy looking characters who may sell me something incredible or may kidnap and sell me.  Or I want earthy and gorgeous Frenchmen to wink and flirt outrageously while they sell me something fabulously, beautifully French.  It happens.  A lot.  (Not the kidnapping bit.)

It’s been an unusually quiet day in the shop today, so I’ve taken the opportunity to start writing up my Must Find List of things I will especially look for on the next buying trip.  Of course declaring that I must find something and actually finding it are two different things when dealing with antiques, but I’m not a bad hunter.  This time I’m looking for vintage French copper cookware, French linen, Art Deco glass, good bone or bakelite-handled cutlery, enamel kitchenware, interesting small antiquities (Roman arrow heads or glass poison bottles are always nice), beautiful ceramics - and this time I’ll go for Art Deco and Victorian ceramics primarily, although I rarely say no to a nice Qing Dynasty Chinese piece.  It’s hard to get really nice wooden pieces like chopping boards or dough troughs at reasonable prices but I often sniff out something worth having, so I’ll try for some of these again.  Jewellery is absolutely a Must Have, and there is rarely a shortage of beautiful French, English and American costume pieces to select from, so as usual I’ll go nuts on the jewellery front. 

Wednesday is a Market Day in Eumundi and today our Shop Manager is Mischka, our youngest moggie and by far the most wilful.  She has been much admired and photographed, and for the most part she’s behaved herself.  She has a trick of “accidentally” falling off my desk and then takes the opportunity to stroll about, meeting and greeting various admirers and eyeing off the door.  But Not a Paw Past the Door is the primary shop rule for the furry Shop Managers.  I’m again trialling her as Market Day Manager – even though she was sacked last time she was here on a Market Day for reasons of Extreme Naughtiness – and she’s been sufficiently well behaved that I might try her again next Wednesday.  There haven’t been the large volumes of people coming through as there usually are, though, so she hasn’t had the chance to get over-excited as she often does when faced with lots of people stroking and admiring her.  Still, she turns two this month so she should be getting old enough to behave maturely and professionally when at work.  Famous last words.

There.  It’s amazing that you can actually get some words down when you just write a stream-of-consciousness missive.  Once we get over to Europe and start buying stuff I shall attempt to post photos of some of the things, and won’t that make me Ms Techno-Savvy-2011?  It will be more than I’ve done before, at any rate. 

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