The Rhinestone Teapot Pin
We all have that one friend who makes us wonder why on earth we keep them around. Mine is Judy.
This morning, Judy and I were out junkin’, hitting the local estate sales. We’ve been junkin’ buddies for years, and each of us knows exactly what the other is looking for. One of the best estate sales on my list was about thirty minutes away, so I picked up Judy at seven a.m. sharp.
Judy’s problem is that she doesn’t have a filter. She never thinks about whether or not it’s appropriate to say something. If the woman thinks it, she says it. Period.
Judy’s kids gave her a Kindle for her birthday last week, and now she won’t go anywhere without it. Judy has never been on social media before, and her kids signed her up on Facebook. I could absolutely kill them.
Before I’ve even finished my travel mug of English Breakfast tea, Judy says, “Did you know that during the Middle Ages, they treated hemorrhoids with hot irons? What they would do is—”
“I don’t want to hear about hemorrhoids from the Middle Ages this early in the morning,” I said. Actually, I didn’t want to hear about them anytime.
“Bill has hemorrhoids real bad, and he—”
“Dang, Elizabeth. Why are you so grumpy?”
“I’m not. I’m trying to wake up.”
We rode in silence for a blessed fifteen seconds before she was at it again, scrolling through Facebook on her Kindle and laughing. I wasn’t about to ask what she found so funny.
“These dancing orangutans are cracking me up,” she said.
“Uh-huh,” I said, not taking my eyes off the road.
“No, seriously. Look at this video.” Judy shoved her Kindle on top of my steering wheel.
“Hey, I can’t watch that and drive at the same time.”
“You’re no fun,” she said.
A few minutes later, she moved on to another topic.
“Did you know Mary Jenkins isn’t speaking to Lisa? It’s all over Facebook. She got mad because—”
“Say, did you bring that list of pieces you’re looking for in your Depression glass pattern?”
Judy collects Buttons and Bows Depression glass—the pink but not the iridescent—and is always looking for new pieces. If I could distract her with that, maybe she would quit obsessing over random posts on Facebook.
To my amazement, she turned off the Kindle and reached into her pocketbook for a small notepad.
“Got it right here,” she said. “I need three more dinner plates, one cup and saucer, two sherbet dishes, and the oval vegetable bowl. Then I’ll have service for eight, and that’s all I want for now.”
“I’m not really looking for anything special today,” I said. “Just my same old list—teapots, teacups, pretty silverplate, and old cookbooks.”
“The usual?” she said.
I nodded. I spotted a sign for the estate sale and turned down a side street, parking a few minutes later. Only a few cars were there, but it was time to go ahead and claim our numbers. The folks who run the estate sale give us a number in the order in which we arrive, and then at opening they let us enter a few at a time.
We were number eight and nine in line, so we’d likely be part of the first group to enter. At eight on the dot, they waved us inside. I glanced at the living room and walked past, headed for the kitchen. Judy did, too, because that was where we usually found Depression glass and teawares. I saw a counter stacked with pink glassware and hoped Judy would find some items she wanted.
The open cabinet doors revealed a display of teapots. I was excited to see a pink Aladdin teapot, which had long been on my wish list. It looked great. I ran a finger around the lid, spout, and base but couldn’t feel any chips or cracks. The teapot was marked eight dollars, so it was definitely going home with me.
Surprisingly, Judy and I were the only ones in the kitchen.
“Any Buttons and Bows?” I asked.
“Just nabbed this vegetable bowl and two sherbets,” she said, holding up the pieces in triumph.
Judy scanned the rest of the kitchen but didn’t find anything else she wanted. She said she was taking her glassware to the checkout table so the gals there could go ahead and box it. Then, she said that in the preview pictures online, she’d seen some old costume jewelry they had for sale, so she was going to check that out while I continued looking at vintage Pyrex dishes. Those small refrigerator dishes were quite fetching, and I’d been thinking of collecting them.
Within minutes, Judy returned and held out her hand. I was afraid she’d gotten out her Kindle and had something for me to view on Facebook. Instead, it was a rhinestone pin in the shape of a teapot.
“Thought you might like this,” she said.
“Pins are just three dollars each.”
“Thanks,” I said. “I love it. Listen, give me another minute to check out the Pyrex, and I’ll be up to pay. I want to hit a couple of other sales before the crowds get there this morning.”
When I got to the cashier, I saw Judy had whipped out her Kindle. “Did you know that during the Middle Ages—”
“Hey!” I said, a little too loudly. “Just wanted you to know I’m here and ready to pay.” To the cashier I said, “Look what my friend found for me.”
Judy beamed like a proud mother.
“I knew someone would want that old teapot pin,” the cashier said. “I’m glad it’s going to a good home.”
And it was. The pin was a little loud for my tastes, a little gaudy, and a little tarnished—kind of like Judy, now that I think about it. But I believe I’ll keep them both.