Monday, August 01, 2005


Ever make a leap of faith? I have, and I'm getting nervous. While I was in Portland last week I took my wedding/engagement ring to the jeweler from whom we bought it originally. This is a highly-reputable store who has been in business for generations. They tend to cater to the upper-crust types. My ring was a "designer" ring, so each time we had some work done on it, from the original setting of the center stone (which Mr. Chick bought separately from a different retailer - he got a better deal), to getting it sized, to having the wedding band and engagement rings soldered together, the ring was sent down to the designers studio in California. The jewelry store itself farms out the work - they don't do any of the work onsite. So each time it takes a week or more that I'm without my most-precious piece of jewelry: my wedding ring. I'm naked without it.

Except we've had a few sketchy entanglements with both the store and the designer (Judith Conway). When Mr. Chick and I first selected my engagement ring, it had to be sized and the center diamond had to be set into the ring. It was sent to the designer's studio and we waited. A couple of weeks later it was ready and Mr. Chick gave it to me. Happy, happy day, right? Wrong. It was the wrong size: too big. So it had to be sent back - another couple of weeks. When it was ready we went together to pick it up and the ring was 1) now too small and 2) bungled. It's a cathedral setting, meaning the sides rise up to the top edge of the center stone. Those sides are platinum and have channel-set diamonds in them. The sides were uneven and skewed. It wasn't ok. So it had to be sent back AGAIN. ANOTHER week+ of waiting for my ring. As a newly-engaged woman, these delays were agony. I just wanted my damn ring! Mr. Chick complained - loudly - and we received a decent store credit for our "trouble". We have used that credit over the years to have the ring re-sized, again, because my fingers got fatter after having Nicholas (I should have just kept the original size they first did for me. Harrumph. Live and learn.) We got the two rings soldered together as well (my wedding band was something I designed myself to partner with my engagement ring. It was not a "set" originally, but I really wanted both a wedding ring and an engagement ring, separately. My engagement ring was initially a "stand-alone" design.)

Each time I've gone back for whatever reason, they've had difficulty finding me in their computer. I don't know why. They've always found me eventually, usually by searching on past addresses (we've moved a few times since getting married, so it's a stretch of my mommy-brain to remember these addresses sometimes!). But this time the guy couldn't find me. Bless his heart, he tried. I have given him ALL the prior addresses we've had, all the various spellings/misspellings of our name, everything. But he could NOT find us. He claims - swears - the records go back over 15 years in the computer, but we're not to be found. You see, we should still have a *little* credit left, and I was hoping to use that credit towards getting my new bigger diamond set into my ring. So now they have my ring AND my loose diamond. I told him that it was a Judith Conway design, but he called me to say that whatever mark that studio puts on their rings is not on mine. He didn't want to send it down to them if it wasn't their design. It took him several days to verify that yes, my ring is from Judith Conway (geez!). He called and asked us if we had a receipt that might give an account number or something - anything - that could help him locate the documentation on my ring. We do, but the numbers I left on his voice mail apparently were wrong or something because they didn't help him. I have scanned the receipt and emailed it to him today, but it's hard to clearly scan a carbon receipt....

So anyway, here it is nearly a week after I dropped off my most valuable and important piece of jewelry I'll ever own, plus a big loose diamond, and nothing. The guy I'm working with is a nice guy and he's being very responsive, but I'm getting VERY NERVOUS that something has or will go wrong. I just feel it. Too many things are fishy. They can't find us in their system. The designers mark is missing from my ring. It takes a while to send it to California certified or registered or whatever. It'll probably get lost. And really, all I want at this point is a stupid quote of what it will cost to have the new diamond set as the center stone. It will require some work to move the cathedral sides of the ring, so I want a cost estimate. If it's too much money, we'll wait for another time or find someone else who can do it. These guys can't even provide me a quote without having to send it off to California for the designer to look at it first. How silly. So now I wait. Restlessly. With visions of terrible things happening to my pretty ring. I know it's *just* a ring and not, say, a person who hangs in the balance, but wouldn't you be nervous if this were YOUR wedding ring we're talking about. I thought so.

Oh man, there is nothing worse than being without your wedding/engagement rings! I hope everything works out. Your rings sound beautiful- you should post a picture when you get them back! I'd love to see them.
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