Monday, January 12, 2015

The Treasure Chest

In the weekend when we went to the market (an outing which makes my heartstrings thrum with anticipation, and I am seldom disappointed), I was thrilled to come across a stall where the vendors seemed to be aiming all their wares at me, me, me and me alone!  (As I picked up and paid for one item an overexcited woman cried out, "Come over here mum, and see this weird teapot, I've never seen anything like it", which I thought was a bit harsh.)  First I bought the the most interesting old tin (a bit speckled with rust) in a luscious shades of gold and green, which was a Treasure Chest and originally contained 5lb of Teaspoon Tea, packed by The Quality Packers, of 5 Commerce Street Auckland, only a few steps from where my apartment is.  (It was meant to be, obviously.)  We were a nation of tea drinkers then, before coffee usurped its place and we became devoted to the Flat White and Short Black.  Imagine buying 5lb of tea, I tend to buy 120 grams of special tea now, Earl Grey Paris or The Earl of Harlem, from a specialty tea shop.  5lb would last me for years.

Then I spied the aforementioned teapot along with a honeypot adorned with bees (another thing I had always wanted), and I was very pleased with myself (despite the fact that passersby were laughing at my choices).
It wasn't until I got home and unpacked my treasures that I pondered the obvious preference for things masquerading as other things - beehive honeypots, cottage teapots,

 little pansy plates (thank you Dancing Queen)
 pink forget me not vases
mugs disguised as basketweave or ears of corn
 beer tankards disguised as squirrels on giant acorns
 sunflower and asparagus plates
or dishes resembling celery 

Why is it charming for something to be dressed up in this way?  Maybe it goes along desire to dress up in costume for art deco weekend?  Who knows but I will just abandon myself to this preoccupation and not question it.  (But I shall try to resist the temptation to dress as a celery stalk or sunflower.)

Maybe the best treasure to be unearthed on that outing was the powder compact (very deco looking, I thought).  Another thing I had always coveted, and though I don't know where I will locate any powder to go in it I will pretend if needs be, once I get to Napier, that I am being decadent and powdering my nose in public.  

I couldn't walk past a richly coloured paperweight to go with the "new" plate a friend of my mum's had donated to my sadly empty and bare cottage, either.

The best new blossom in the garden this week was a scented frilly white flower (and even in the section of the garden designated as white), the name of which I can no longer recall but which was completely beguiling to me when I read its label in the garden centre last year.  

As I was hanging out the washing in the warm summer breeze I noticed one of the old teatowels I had picked up at an op shop somewhere.  It was decorated with images of flowers and explicit explanations told what each of them represented.  How startling to be given a bouquet containing all these different flowers, it is fortunate that we no longer associate blooms with definite meanings. What if you received this one:

Sometimes ignorance is bliss!


  1. Oh, my! One of my favorite flowers, foxglove, means " I can't trust you". Wonder where in the world they got such meanings for flowers. Glad we ignore all that!
    Your treasure find is really wonderful!

  2. I don't know if it is the same where you live Egretta, but foxgloves grow wild in parts of our country where they are not wanted (in the native forests for instance) and are a noxious pest! But they do look very pretty all the same, I ave to admit. Glad you liked the treasure anyway.