Ruby Red Goblets

 ruby-red goblets

 
On the outskirts of the city in the opposite direction of our house, every time I drive by, a small Victorian building catches my eye with its massive sign displaying ANTIQUE MALL. Mirroring English architecture of the early 1600s, Queen Anne style, the house is marked with a wrap-around porch and a pediment over portico in the center. For some reason, I am drawn to it and it is not for the antiques they trade. From the top of the roof, a skinny turret is stretching its neck towards the sky giving the whole building a spiritual aura; the kind that is usually evoked only by churches.
 

I find myself gripping the door handle of this mystical building without even making a conscious decision to visit. I expect to be greeted by the musty scent of aged collectibles,but instead I am enveloped with an inviting, cozy atmosphere.

 

Only a few moments pass before my eyes adjust to the darkness of the front room. Positioned to my right is a large vintage curio unveiling hundreds of miniature figurines behind the glass door with buffed hinges and butterfly shaped knobs. Behind an oak counter to my left stands a tiny woman with silver hair dressed old-fashioned but classy. She looks effortlessly put together like she came straight from the turn of the last century, her attire not looking costumey as I would assume. She fits right in. Perhaps they got her at an antique auction too, was a thought that briefly entered my mind before she approaches me with her soft voice.
“Hi! Looking for anything in particular?”
“Not really,” I answer brushing the snowflakes off my shoulders “I just always wanted to come in. The interior is larger than I expected” I notice.
“Yes,” she smiles “there is more than meets the eye.”

 

I begin my journey through the rooms.
Each one is set up tastefully with furniture and items matching that certain age and style. You could easily see how much thought and attention to detail has been put into decorating. This was going to take more time than I anticipated. Just when I get to the end of one room another one emerges like the land of Narnia behind the hidden wardrobe door. With each room, I am smoothly transported to a different era. Here and there some old lady quietly appears asking if I’m doing all right just to bring me back to reality or maybe I was imagining her, I can’t tell. I willingly let my mind wander fantasizing about life back then, whilst floating between rooms, envisioning myself serving tea in these Royal Doulton blue polka cups on my Duncan Phyfe table and making smart conversations with ladies in fancy dresses and gentlemen with monocle and cylinder hats.

 

In the kitchen-like room, I become a young mother baking a cake, using this brand new gadget – an egg beater with rotating parts that are hand-turned. How fun! My kids are playing on the floor with their wooden cars and fabric dolls, my youngest hanging onto my long skirts with one hand. The unmistakable pungent aroma of cinnamon tickles my nostrils and lingers in the air.

 

I hasten through the next area feeling like it is inappropriate for me to loiter. This is clearly the gentleman’s room, for it is filled with hunting rifles, guns, tobacco pipes and books with heavy leather covers, a room where ladies are unwelcome.

 

In the changing room, I gently touch the silk and lace garments and hold the Cromwell shoes with a high tabbed front and buckle, wondering how comfortable they are. Of course, I stay here a while, what woman wouldn’t?

 

Running out of time I only briefly glance through the remaining rooms while making my way to the exit and firmly promising myself to return soon. Several thin crystalline rays of sunshine come through the west window and reflect on the glass shelf above my head. And that’s when I saw them: a set of ruby-red goblets. A sea of dancing diamonds formed by the cascading beams. A loud almost guttural sound leaves my lips; a sound of approval, surprise, and delight. My eyes fill with tears and the old lady appears once again asking if I’m all right.
 
“My mom had the same set when I was a little girl,” I say, pretending to be bothered by the light that caused my eyes to water. She nods with recognition and quickly disappears leaving me to fight the well of emotions that suddenly overcome me. I don’t know how long I stood there. Familiar faces emerged and filled up the room with laughter. Mom crossed the room and sat next to me on the armrest of the orange chair, the latest fashion of the early 1970s. She wore her best dress, the blue one with large flower prints, worn only on special occasions like today. My aunts and uncles who live in Germany and France came to visit. Mom stroked my hair and in the language that I first learned and asked me to play piano for the guests. I loved to perform only to make my mom proud, instinctively seeking her approval. I played a song or two, earning a joyful round of applause. After my mini-concert, I was dismissed and mom and dad didn’t notice me for the rest of the day.
 
Sitting quietly in the orange chair I listened to exciting conversations the adults were having without grasping the majority of what was being said, but feeling important to be allowed among them. After a while I tuned out, giving up on following their stories. My attention was devoted to the china cabinet in which sunlight glittered over the newest display, a French set of ruby-red goblets. On the rare occasions that mom, with vanity, used those beautiful gems I daydreamed of France and the extravagant life my uncle surely is living. In my juvenile mind, the goblets represented prestige.

 

Strange that something this trivial can bring back the feeling of home but I embrace it to its full extent. Home is where the richness is. Home is where the heart is free to feel.

 

But wait, when did I grow so old? The things that were new in my childhood are now being branded antiques. Bemused and young at heart I proceed to the counter tightly gripping the vintage egg beater in my hand. Why did I not buy the goblets? I am not certain. Perhaps it is my desire to repeat this experience at another visit. Perhaps I’m too nostalgic to look at them daily. Perhaps I fear they would lose their sparkle. Perhaps they’re meant to sit at this antique store forever and remind someone else of their childhood. Perhaps…

 

This story is featured at What’d You Do This Weekend?
 

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Jas

publisher and creative director at All that's Jas
Jas is a cheesecake addict and the author of Balkan Comfort Food cookbook available on Amazon. You can download a free excerpt of the book when you subscribe to All that's Jas newsletter updates. To learn more about Jas visit her About page.
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14 Comment

  1. Reply
    Holly @ While I'm Waiting
    July 7, 2015 at 10:16 pm

    I read some where that antique implies that something is at least 100 years old. Vintage/retro refers to something 20 or so years old. So… there’s no way you are antique! 🙂 Vintage sounds way more chic! Thanks for sharing at Waiting on…Wednesday! Hope to see you tomorrow!

    Holly @ http://www.iwillservewhileiwait.blogspot.com

    1. Reply
      allthatsjas
      July 8, 2015 at 8:32 am

      Thanks, Holly, I feel better now 😀 No name can change the fact that I’m turning half a century this winter. So, all in all – old, lol!

  2. […] Pork Chops with Maple Bourbon Sauce from The Briny LemonRuby Red Goblets from All Thats Jas  Thanks for sharing these fabulous stories.  You can get a featured button […]

  3. Reply
    Tumbleweed Contessa
    July 4, 2015 at 1:00 pm

    What a great story! When I see stuff from my time in antique stores I label it “vintage” not antique. It makes me feel a little better. I came over because I am looking for some ruby reds like that. Don’t leave them to long or I will find them. 🙂 Thanks for sharing at What’d You Do This Weekend. This will be one of the features Monday. Can’t wait to see this weekends adventure!

    1. Reply
      allthatsjas
      July 5, 2015 at 9:25 am

      Lol, good idea to cal it vintage 🙂 Unfortunately, since this story was written, the store closed before I visited it again. It was there for years! 🙁

  4. Reply
    helloredds
    June 30, 2015 at 11:32 am

    I was with you as you went through the Antique Mall! You are quite a story teller, and I love that you found some red goblets that brought such fond memories.

    Thanks for sharing!

    I came over on the Turn it up Tuesday link up. Glad to find your site today.
    Blessings,
    Melanie

    1. Reply
      allthatsjas
      June 30, 2015 at 12:49 pm

      That is so sweet of you to say, Melanie! You made me smile and motivated me to keep writing 😀 Thank you so much!Hope you have a glorious day!

  5. I swear I think my grandma had these! Thanks so much for taking the time to link up with us at the #HomeMattersParty – we hope to see you again on Friday!

    1. Reply
      allthatsjas
      June 30, 2015 at 11:00 am

      They were really a trend back then, so I bet she did! 🙂 See you Friday!

  6. Reply
    Sherry
    June 28, 2015 at 11:54 pm

    What a good article. I see things from my childhood labeled retro! What! Seems like just yesterday. Thanks for linking up and sharing with us at Funtastic Friday.

    1. Reply
      allthatsjas
      June 29, 2015 at 9:53 am

      Thanks, Sherry! Isn’t it sad though? Wishing you an amazing week.

  7. Reply
    Jennifer
    June 28, 2015 at 5:37 pm

    Thanks for linking up at the Weekend Blog Hop at My Flagstaff Home!

    Jennifer

  8. Reply
    Joyce Lansky
    March 3, 2013 at 1:58 pm

    Age is a state of mind, and seeing items from your childhood labeled “Antique” sure can put your mind in that state!

    http://joycelansky.blogspot.com

    1. Reply
      Jas
      March 3, 2013 at 9:56 pm

      Yep, you got that right Joyce! Thanks for stopping by 🙂

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