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Sunday, July 18, 2010

A Romantic Tale

ring

Yesterday was our 20th wedding anniversary.

It’s known traditionally as the “China” anniversary, but the modern  name given is  “Platinum”.  Hubby decided to surprise me by designing this gold and platinum band, complete with a Latin inscription (which shall remain anonymous, if you don’t mind) inside.

I was absolutely blown away, as we don’t usually go so overboard on the present front, and besides, I was already very happy with the book, flowers, and CD’s he’d earlier given me, this came totally out of the blue!

But what makes it all the more special is the story it comes with.

Twenty-one years ago, we designed and commissioned my engagement ring to be made, personally selecting the stones and setting we wanted.  I chose a yellow Topaz for the centre gem, framing it on either side with a diamond, and Alan penned a Latin inscription to be engraved on the inner band.  We ordered it from Hatton Garden, in London, the retail centre for bespoke jewelry, and in all that time since, I've never tripped across any other ring even remotely similar to it, it’s unique.

Although he wasn't certain if the place still existed, Alan decided to return to Hatton Garden, in the hope of visiting the exact same shop from where we had originally had this engagement ring made.  And yes, it was still there.  He found it had little changed, with all the receipts still handwritten, duplicated, and copies filed away -  computerisation has completely passed them by.

When Alan mentioned why he was there, the elderly gentleman went over to his files, and, lo and behold, pulled out the exact same original order that we had initially placed with them, from all those years back. 

Not only that, they had still held my ring-size on file, too!

How remarkable is that?

But if you think that is amazing, just listen to this..

The jeweler was able to confirm that it was actually he, himself, who had taken that original commission, he recognised his own handwriting on the slip.

Isn’t that totally amazing? 

Um.  Sadly, there is just one teensie-tiny, little snag.

This new ring barely fits over my little pinky, now (giggle).  My fingers are no longer the slim, slender digits of my younger days – and it obviously never occurred to either of the pair to even consider this.  All the same, it's sweet to think hubby still deludes himself into thinking that I'm just the same, right here and now, as I was way, way back then, isn't it?  Truth is, I do now weigh the same as I did on my wedding day - but when I gained over three and a half stones mid-way through our marriage, I don't think he even noticed the drastic change, no more than he did after I lost the weight again.

When the ring didn't fit, the poor lad was crushed.  “But how can that be, when your wedding rings still fit?”

It’s been at least a good ten years since I’ve been able to remove either one.

Ah well, least he assures me it can easily be re-sized..

(Grin.)

44 comments:

TechnoBabe said...

That is so sweet and hubby gets bonus points for thinking of it surprising you. To find the same store and have the very same person who took the order so long ago is saying something about the shop too, still in business and return customers. Happy Anniversary!

Shrinky said...

Hi TechnoBabe, yeah, kinda' spooky really, in a nice sort of a way, isn't it? Talk about stepping back in time!

Melissa said...

That is SO sweet! He definitely sounds like a winner! Congrats on 20 years. Every year on our anniversary, we exchange gift in accordance with the tradition (sometimes we pick the "modern gift" and sometimes we pick the "traditional gift"). This year the item was copper - he gave me a necklace and I gave him a piece of art (a guitar made out of recycled copper scrap-metal). I like the tradition... I like tradition.

Again, HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!

Fen said...

n'aaw that's just gorgeous and what a lovely little tale to go with it. Almost makes me a little mushy on the inside! Happy Anniversary, I hope that the next 20 years are wonderful too xo

Mickle in NZ said...

Happy Anniversary - what a lovely tale. And your Alan has designed a very beautiful ring - how wonderful to have it made by the same jeweller as your engagement ring, resizing should be a minor alteration.

Such a sweet and thoughtful gift. Do celebrate the occasion - I raise my glass to you two, and to your next 20 years and beyond,

Michelle and Zebbycat, xxx and purrrrumbles

RA said...

Lovely, absolutely lovely. Happy Anniversary! :)

chewy said...

What a very, very thoughtful gift. It's a gorgeous ring! Happy Anniversary.

The Urban Cowboy said...

Happy anniversary to the both of you. It's awesome hearing stories like yours, where happiness, joy, and true love exist.

jinksy said...

Aren't you the lucky one? Lovely ring, and lovely thought - never ming the size!

mrsnesbitt said...

How lovely Carol. My wedding ring is my favourite piece of jewellery yet it is just a thin band of gold. I can not wear my engagement or eternity ring as I dislocated my little finger twice and now it is permanantly bent. I have my mum's wedding ring which needs to be repaired. I wear it on my right hand which is the hand I use to hang onto the grabrail on the back of the motorbike - obviously I need to squeeze tight sometimes in order to stay on (manic grin) and over the years my mum's wedding ring has made its way to the jeweller on several occasions - still keeps him in fish and chips! lol! When Dad died I had his signet ring re-sized and where the initial engraving of his initials JHD wore down I had them re-engraved as J&D for Jon and I!

Mushy said...

The only way to stay "forever young" is to marry someone that really loves you. In their eyes we will always tall, slender, and firm!

Shrinky said...

Aw Melissa, it's lovely you exchange gifts, according to the tradition of which year it falls on, like that. Our bedroom wall is covered now in twenty framed prints - every year Alan creates a fresh one in accordance to the year that each anniversary symbolises (smile).

Hey Fen, I never said the past 20yrs were entirely that blissfully "wonderful", y'know (wink)..

Thanks Michelle, I'll toast to that - and with snuggles to Zebby cat, too!

Cheers R A, thanks for that (grin).

Hi Chewy, yeah, it was a lovely gift, right enough.

Urban Cowboy, hey, don't get too carried away here, we sure have had a fair few share of our up's and down's, believe me!

My sentiments, exactly, Jinksy (smile)..

Oh Denise, that is such a lovely tale of your father's signet ring - and how special!

Yeah Mushy, wise and true words, indeed, my friend. There is no doubt in my mind at all, how much I am loved.

YELLOWDOG GRANNY said...

the ring is beautiful and so is your love for each other.

SJ said...

Congrats on the 20th !

I wonder if it were still called the China anniversary what he would have got you!

Shrinky said...

Aw, knock it off Jackie, sure, the ring is gorgeous to be sure, but no marriage is made in heaven, is it? We've simply learned to just get along, and to not judge each other for any of our short-comings (grin).

Shrinky said...

Heaven forbid, SJ, he'd probably supply me with another set of crockery to keep throwing at him..!

The Blue Zoo said...

Aw, thats so sweet! Im sure the rings are all just gorgeous, and Im glad that your new one can be resized.

Happy Anniversary!!

Ms. Anthropy said...

This is definitely romantic! Happy Anniversary!

Saz said...

how lovely, you must feel very loved up!!

happy anniversary!

tattytiara said...

Considering the sweet way you write about that man who still sees the exact same woman he fell in love with twenty years after the fact, I'm sure you two have many, many more happy anniversaries to come. Gorgeous ring!

Leslie: said...

What a beautiful surprise! I was at a wedding yesterday and apparently only 74% of brides receive a diamond engagement ring! I thought my new engagement ring was very unique in that I chose a (large - lol) antique-cut garnet (Lorne's birthstone) for the middle with a small diamond on either side set in white gold. I adore this ring and it sounds like a similar setting to your original one. I think true love sees the eyes and the soul and not the body after a while, something I'm grateful for as both L and I have changed over the years - he with white hair and mustache and me with extra poundage! lol

~Babs said...

What a wonderful surprise from someone who's (obviously) still your sweetie.
It's a great design!
Every year, we sigh,,and are smiling when we realize we've made it one more year.
My Boyfriend still thinks I look the same too. So I can appreciate that he doesn't wear his glasses, and I have to read price tags to him, which otherwise annoys me no end!
Congratulations Shrink and Mr. Shrinky,,,and may your next 20 be your best yet!

Joe Cap said...

Happy Anniversary! I love that about London, where the shop-keepers are so concientious! I hear things like that all the time!

secret agent woman said...

That's very sweet, It really is a good thing ring sizes can be changed.

#1Nana said...

What a great story! My husband and I will celebrate 39 years this August. Can we really be that old??? Most years we forget our anniversary. My mother used to send us a greeting card, but since she died we sometimes lose track of dates and realize only later that our anniversary had passed.

This year we will celebrate on a cruise to Alaska.

Your ring is lovely. You are a lucky woman!

Fletch said...

I'm gobsmacked!

So many messages, on so many levels, all in one post. How do you do it?

● The Hatton Garden jeweller still at it 20-plus years later ...

● Hubby showing a romantic streak that you suspected was there, but wasn't certain about ...

● Still managing to retain the same weight as on your wedding day. That is a mega-achievement ...

● Hubby, in his excitement at finding the original jeweller, completely forgetting that hands that 'have done the dishes' AND the 'cooking' AND the 'cleaning' AND the 'driving' for the past 20 years may have had the tendency to expand a little ...

Sheeeeeeesh, I could go on, but I'm sure you've got the point!

Joanna Jenkins said...

A very happy anniversary to you! This is a wonderful story and you told it so well. Thanks a million for sharing. It made me smile.
Cheers, jj

Hilary said...

Aww that's sweet. I wish more stores were like this.. many more stores. Such service is mostly dead these days. Happy 20th!

Shrinky said...

Hi Blue Zoo, yeah, it was a great day, hubby excelled himself, and took us out to a fab restaurant in the evening, where I stuffed myself with lobster and Champagne - ahhhhhhhhh, perfection (smile)!

Cheers Ms Anthropy, yeah, hubby's earned his beannie-points for the year..

Hello Saz, it's nice to find he can still surprise me now and then (wink).

Hi there Tatty, hmmn, well, like I said to hubby, even murder doesn't carry twenty years with it, thesedays (It's good to keep him on his toes)!

Amen to that, Leslie! I love the sound of this ring of yours, too!

Hahaha, oh Bab's there is a lot to be said for bottle-top glasses, this I know! Seriously, I never understand these women who go for trim boy-toys, personally, I far prefer my man to be at least a little bit flabbier than myself!

Hi Joe, ah, these places are becoming far less and less the norm to find anywhere, sadly. I guess that's why it is all the more special.

I'll second that, Secret Agent!

A cruise to Alaska? Wow Nana, I'd happily save up a few anniversaries to trade against that! What a way to celebrate in style, I'm sure you'll have a fabulous time.

Oh Fletch, I do love you so! Please know how much you've made my day (see my big grin)? It's such a treat when ever you visit, such the gent, you are! (x)

Hi JJ, welcome back from your travels, you've been missed!

I'm with you, Hilary, these such treasures are a rare find(smile).

deb said...

oh, that is seriously romantic and wonderful.
sizing flub aside.

congratulations , and cheers to many more years !

Akelamalu said...

What a beautiful, romantic thing to do!

Many congratulations on your wedding anniversary. :)

Elly Lou said...

Adorable! Big sloppy smooches to you both!

Shrinky said...

Hi Deb, oh, I think it's all the more special because of that flub, don't you? (grin)

Thanks for that, Akelamalu!

Elly Lou, what a big softie you are (one of the reasons I love you so)!

Eternally Distracted said...

OMG I love your husband!! He sounds like the most fabbarooney, super lovely, amazingly fantasterrific man in the world.

coopernicus said...

Just popped over from Ms. Lime's house to say Hi and congratulations on the anniversary.
I have the same issue with removal of the wedding band. I think it would take motor oil and a hacksaw to get it off my enlarged fingers....

Shrinky said...

Hey, keep it under your hat, Eternally, no need to swell his head, here - sheesh!

Coopernicious, um, my surname is Cooper - IS THAT YOU, ALAN???

Suldog said...

Happy Anniversary! Great story!

Love is blind (and sometimes deaf and dumb - especially dumb.)

laughingwolf said...

belated anniv greets, youse guyz :)

you may wanna check out this facebook site:

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Artists-and-Autism/366165741773?v=wall

Shrinky said...

Never a truer word, Jim! (Laughing)

Hey Laughingwolf, thanks for that, I've never encountered the site before, it's wonderful!

Kristina Hughes said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nancy said...

I had mine resized ten years ago.

Beautiful anniversary gift! Happy 20 years!

laughingwolf said...

welcome, the art is superb! :)

billy pilgrim said...

you've trained him well.

Parabolic Muse said...

Okay, this is very romantic. I love it that it was the same guy!