I love watches. In fact, I collect them.
I’m not brand conscious or into luxury watches. No, most of them are fairly cheap and generic. But they ‘spark joy’. (My fellow Marie Kondo fans will know what I mean.)
I don’t even use them that much. In fact, I don’t think I have been wearing a wrist watch since Christmas…
One of them in particular makes me very happy.
In September it will have been a part of my collection for 22 years. And it still works. Against all odds.
For my birthday a couple of years after we got married, Johannes gave me a beautiful, rather expensive wrist watch. Within six months or so, I lost it. I looked everywhere. And I mean everywhere. And then I woke up one morning as I heard the garbage truck noisily exiting our street, and suddenly realized there was one place I hadn’t looked, but should have. I am now almost 100% certain that my watch had been thrown away by a particular toddler in our home, who loved ‘helping me’ by throwing things in the garbage. Her name shall not be mentioned…
Oh well. It was just a thing, right? JB declared that that was the last time he would be buying me an expensive watch, and I didn’t blame him. Expensive things just made me nervous about using them anyway.
Fast forward a couple of years, and JB and I decided to take a trip using my ID-staff tickets from SAS. Nowadays it would have been called a ‘babymoon’ – since I was expecting Benjamin, but I don’t think the term had been invented back then. We traveled to Singapore – and enjoyed a few days of sightseeing, great food and shopping. Singapore was replete with high end shopping malls, but 1) I was pregnant and 2) I’m not Asian and a size 0, so shopping for expensive designer clothes wasn’t really an option. There were however, lots of other shopping options as well. And one of our favorites, was in the Chinese part of town. I bought a dark blue button down silk dress that was my favorite go – to Sunday dress for years, and we brought home a prison mirror and a spice chest as luggage – a few years before the Indonesian furniture trend hit Europe. We still have them.
But my most precious ‘find’ from that trip was undoubtedly my filigree watch. It was not expensive, it is not silver, and it is a totally unknown brand, but I had never seen anything like it, and haven’t since.
I have lost it several times over the years, but it always turns up again. Once it was missing for over a year, and I even tried to replace it with a similar watch when we traveled to Thailand. But then I found it… It does not handle humidity well, and will stop if it gets wet. But it invariably starts again when it has had time to dry up. Every time I change the battery, the jeweler informs me that the watch is all rusty and ruined inside, and that there is no point in changing the battery. That it is, in fact, broken. But I still ask them to change the battery, and it always starts working again.
As we speak however, it is resting in the drawer of my night stand, because the chain is missing a tiny piece, so it comes undone easily, and I’m afraid of losing it completely. It needs some soldering. I am totally going to have it fixed though, because I really do believe that this particular watch will be following me into the eternities. At the very least, I shall try.
Who says you can’t take anything with you?? 🙂