I'm in the season of my life when childbirth is almost certainly out of the question and I've been advised that mood swings, night sweats and temporary insanity figure heavily in my near future. I can't remember a time when items of antique and vintage origin weren't an integral part of my existence.
I was raised by two wonderfully creative parents who also happened to be lifelong antiques collectors, dealers and appraisers. I remember my young life as a succession of antiques shows, auctions and thrift shops, yard sales...and yes, even the occasional back alley dumpster.
While most other children were raised with gentle admonishments like, "Say Thank You" or "Please play nicely," the phrase I most remember hearing was, "Don't Touch Anything!"
My folks were particularly fond of antique cut & art glass. I remember learning, at the tender age of 4 or 5, to fold my arms or put my little hands in my pockets the minute we entered a shop full of those glittering fragile objects of their desire. I thought this solution was rather inventive. However, when one trips over an untied shoelace, it prohibits them from adequately catching their balance, thus propelling them forward into the very thing which they most wanted to avoid. In my case, a small display of 19th century French perfume bottles. After that episode, I believe I next saw my parents about 18 months later, once my term of indentured servitude was completed, the broken bottles having been paid for.
To this day, I'll chuckle when I find myself hunting through the glassware sections of antique shops or thrift stores and look down to see my arms firmly entwined across my chest. Ahh, the seeds sewn earliest have the deepest roots!