e is for: ebay
Ebay is amazing. I have not bought anything for months, but I have some ebay stories as I am sure many bloggers have. Ebay gives you access to hundreds of vendors; it's easy to forget this and to take it for granted. I enjoyed the gambling aspect of the auctions, waiting until the last minute to pounce and making a bid, and then. . .did I get it or not? And it is a learning experience. Among my winning purchases: vintage pottery created by artists during the 30's , antique snow shoes, silver bracelets from Mexico, and an Orrefors Crystal martini pitcher. I always ask the seller if there is a story behind the object and sometimes there is.
The seller of the snowshoes wrote this: "We moved into a house on the Hudson River near Poughkeepsie, NY. One of the buildings was the first Levi Jeans factory in the United States until the Gold Rush when they moved to the West. In the building, in the loft were several antiques and the snow shoes were in an old wooden coach box with some other relics. They belonged to the Shaw family, a worker in the Levi factory."
The seller of the crystal pitcher wrote that Hemingway drank martinis from it while writing Across the River and Into the Trees. I wrote that I would from then on call it the "Hemingway Pitcher" and I have. Sometimes the email exchanges are fun, and it makes the whole process interesting.
"Vincent" was another purchase from a New Mexico vendor, a bird created from a gourd. He looks like a Vincent, my name for him. He arrived with his beak broken off, but I fixed it and for $10 the price was perfect too.
A few years ago my husband and I went on a cruise to celebrate a special birthday. We had planned and saved for it; a seven-week cruise around the perimeter of South America was too fabulous to miss. When I read that there would be eleven formal nights, I panicked. Eleven, I thought. How would I buy that many or even half that many dresses I would never wear again. .Ebay came to the rescue. Many evening dresses and prom-type dresses are worn only once and then some are sold on ebay at very reasonable prices, at least 2/3 off the original price. So, I bought several, planning on wearing them more than once during the trip. An off- white silk layered sheath was my favorite--floor length, beautifully constructed, which probably had been a wedding dress. It was my choice to wear the first night when the gentlemen are in tuxes and the ladies are in floor length gowns. We sat down at our table, meeting our fellow travelers for the first time, but I felt at ease and knew that I did not look like "Poor Pitiful Pearl." (Do you remember those dolls?) One of the guests turned to me and complimented me on the dress, and my husband proudly said, "She got it on ebay!."
Have you used Ebay and bought something funny,or unusual, or worth much, much more than you paid -- a treasure?