Olive the Jewel Thief.

AW and I did not have the funds to buy new rings etc when we got hitched. It seems also that many places in the world, including Thailand, don’t traditionally have two rings for the bride. I would like to have my second ring, and I’d like it to be how I would like it, which is probably a (fairly unoriginal) diamond solitaire of around .5 carats. As we don’t have loads of cash, we just sort of keep our eyes open. AW’s ring will probably be without a stone, or perhaps with a different sort of stone, as she does not like diamonds. We also plan to have a UK wedding /vows renewal in the future, which is when these rings would be exchanged. We are often on the lookout for a nice and reasonably priced sparkler. AW likes to remind me that if we bought it now, I would not be able to wear it till the UK wedding, still some years off.

We looked in on a shop with a beautiful ring – priced 99000 baht (about £2000) but with a 50% discount. It is really hard to know the real worth, but in this case I was really impressed as she took out the Certificate which describes the stone’s official properties and grades. For a .5 karat certified stone, it seemed that 49000baht was a good deal. We didn’t get much further though, for reasons which will become apparent.

Next the sales assistant got out a little tray to tell us the colour grade.

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The shop was tiny and there wasn’t much room. I was holding Olive, who reached out and touched the colour chart tray. Up to this point I had assumed the colour chart tray contained only simulations, and that they were stuck in.

Uh-uh.

As Olive touched the tray and one vanished, the immediate realisation was “SHIT! What was I doing handing a tray of loose diamonds to a woman holding a baby?! ” by the shop assistant, and “SHIT! Those are real loose diamonds!!!! Olive, where the hell did you put that!!??” by me. We all saw her touch it, but not where it went; cue scrabbling desperately around the cramped shop floor on our hands and knees, our bags, her mouth, my bra…. I could not work out how it had happened, as we got to her fingers as soon as they made contact, so all she could really have done was knock it somewhere.

I pointedly snapped the little colour case shut and handed it to the agitated assistant so that it’s remaining contents could be kept safe.

While we were looking Olive, on the floor grinning, also pulled over the plants, adding an earthy dribbling mess to the already crammed floor on which we were trying to carry out the bulk of our search. It was with a sinking feeling that we knew we were never leaving that little jewellery shop until we’d coughed up a lot of cash.

Olive the diamond thief. I would be watching her shitty nappies for weeks.

Not knowing what to do, I reached for that little case. It had all happened so fast, I had not seen the little tray properly; let alone how many gems had previously been in it. Now there were six in a little horseshoe shape, and sure enough, one of the spots in the sequence of diamonds was empty. My stomach sank. These gems were larger than the .5 carat gem we’d been looking at.

But my mind ticked over as I looked: The diamonds’ spots all had a little number next to them (colour grade), including the empty spot. But the final diamond in the sequence had no number. The little horseshoe shape was asymmetric because of the final numberless stone…. Could it be that this pesky dazzler never left its box? Well of course, it could be- that is precisely how it had looked all along!

I asked the panicking shop assistant; “is it this one?!” and pointed. The strength she gripped my arm with as she said, “It IS!” revealed the extent of her own concern regarding this baffling jewel theft.

At that, we scooted away as quickly as possible, leaving that pool of earthy water on the floor and blusters of mutual apologies. The twins grinned broadly.

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