Everything Else

Traveling & Antiques Shopping

My thoughts and prayers go out to all of the victims and their families from this past Friday’s unimaginable events in Newtown, Connecticut. There are simply no words that could ever begin to make sense of what took place on that fateful day. 

While I own a plethora of authentic, handmade wares that I’ve picked up from my travels abroad, antiques are not included in this. For anyone not familiar with the term, an antique is defined as being “a collectable object such as a piece of furniture or work of art that has a high value because of its considerable age.” Although I’ve shopped in Buenos Aires’ famous outdoor market in San Telmo I didn’t really find anything to my liking. Perhaps it’s my ignorant antiques self talking here, but a lot of what I saw in San Telmo looked to be junk. Not to say that a terrific find can’t be had because even I know they exist (for instance when authentic paintings by the greats like Renoir and Van Gogh turn up at flea markets with a price tag of only $5 USD). However, I suppose I have neither the patience nor fortitude required when contending with countless other shoppers, all looking for their prized bargain.

However, I am the owner of one antique that I acquired with nothing more than a bit of luck. One Christmas as a young child, my grandparents were giving away to the four grandchildren, a Christmas article that had once been the toy of my great-uncle who is now 91. I ended up being the victor, beating out my older brother and two cousins. Every Christmas since, the Santa and his reindeer has come out to play at Christmastime. Although today it’s simply a Christmas decoration, it’s a Christmas decoration that is almost a century old and a century ago it was also a toy that brought happiness to a little boy. What I like most about antiques are not the monetary value that some people associate with them but rather the story behind them, the hands that they passed through, the history that “new wares” simply don’t have.

Personally, I would much prefer decorating my house with articles that showcase some of the most beautiful and incredible places I have visited on my travels. I’m still in the midst of getting mi casa in order and decorated to my liking but hopefully in the new year I’ll be able to share some pictures.

Do any of you collect antiques?

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  • Reply
    December 17, 2012 at 1:01 am

    My husband and I love to go antique shopping, we rarely buy anything but we love to have a good browse. We did buy an 1800s Australian draw set. in which the seller tried to convince 2 foreigners what a great piece of Australiana we would be purchasing and maybe it had belonged to our forefathers….I also love vintage costume jewellery and have a nice collection of Australian Simpson Brooches.

  • Reply
    the red headed traveler
    December 17, 2012 at 3:02 am

    It sounds like you own some quite impressive pieces, especially the draw set. I suppose maybe that’s my hesitancy with antiques, I wouldn’t want to be duped as to a piece’s authenticity or its currency since I’m certainly not a professional in the antiques field and wouldn’t know any better when shopping.

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