Monday, 10 August 2009

Tempus Fugit

In October 1993, at 19, I started university. Although I was still going back to my parents', about 50km away, every week-end, this was for me the real beginning of true independence. I had been spending my weeks away from home (at the French version of a boarding school - i.e. nothing posh about it) for the past four years but this was different. From my room in a student residence, I was more or less free to do what I wanted.

Within a few months, having finally realised that I was neither straight nor bisexual, I had been to my first gay club, had met my first boyfriend and had started to come out to my closest friends. I also started to find my own sartorial style.

This was not a particularly rosy or successful time and I don't look at it with fond nostalgia, wishing I was still there, but it was an important stage in my life.

Part of this metamorphosis involved the purchase of a silver ring. Something cheap (the equivalent of £7 (70 Francs), as I remember) but I thought it was elegant and fashionable with its design which, as I later found out, was based on an Indonesian pattern.

I placed it on my right ring finger and it has very seldom left that finger ever since. Only once, a few years back did I lose it for a while, having taken it off at the gym, it has somehow slipped from the pocket of my bag where I had placed it.

Over the year, the ring has lost some of its own shape to better espouse the shape of my finger; a few dents have appeared, but on the whole it's been in a way a faithful companion.

Last week however, I noticed a crack in the part of the ring facing my palm. I thought it would probably be fine; other wounds inflicted to it by time had not grown any worse over the year. Today however I notice that the problem has indeed grown worse: a part of the ring has gone loose (as can be clearly seen on the pic above).

the cost of repair, which I can't afford at the moment in any case would probably be more than what the ring itself is worth. I have also no idea where I could get the job done. I therefore had to reluctantly retire this old friend.

My finger feels naked and my thumb keeps going back to where it used to find the ring to play with it and readjust it. It seems that after 16 years, a page needs to be turned. Hopefully, the departure of the ring will mark the start of another momentous period in my life, just like the one heralded by its arrival.


  1. You would need to find a silversmith to repair the ring. Your local reputable jeweler could probably point you in the right direction.

  2. and here stands the first hurdle

  3. I wore a men's a diamond ring, for years. It had belonged to my father's father (or grandfather?). The ring had remained in my mother's care through my parents' divorce. Only ever wore it for vain reasons (and it was nice having something so expensive, considering the poverty I'd been raised in). In college, I left it in a hotel room and when I called back, less than 10 minutes after my departure, the cleaning staff claimed to be completely unaware of any jewelry.

    I was sad about it for a moment but eventually felt a huge weight lifted (from my knuckle). I wouldn't say the ring had been holding me down, but it was definitely keeping me tethered to a time that needed to pass.


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