Aunt Ethel and Uncle Dub/G.W.
You can float my boat. Thankyouverymuch, in my best Elvis voice.
Clouds float. (I see a tractor in them sometimes?)
Whipped cream floats in coffee. (hang on, coffee is in the other room. Somewhere.)
You can build a float. (remember those HPU floats every year for Homecoming? Not quite the Rose Parade tho.)
You can float on top of the water. Yeah yeah, us fluffy folks float easier than you skin and bones types. Or is it we sink faster? Where’s Google when I need it?
I can float around on an imaginary cloud of ecstasy.
My mind can float. I am an experienced mind floater.
I can float from subject to subject. And often do.
A bank can float a loan. Please???
An opal can float.
WHAT? Yep, they can float. And I can prove it.
A floating opal pendant
This is the pendant that my Great-Aunt Ethel gave me back in about 1964. She worked in a ladies’ clothing store downtown and had won it in an inner-store employee contest. She gave it to me for maybe my birthday or Christmas. The minute I set my teeny bopper eyes on it, I adored it. It was so unique and pretty and…well, floaty! I wore it a lot. Eventually, it slid to the back of my jewelry chest and was forgotten for a while. Years later, I wondered where my pendant was. I found it right where I thought it would be but alas, it was broken…the glass globe had shattered and the glycerin was long gone. But the opals survived along with the gold cap at the top. What to do, what to do.
You see, a floating opal is not a single opal piece, but many flakes of an opal/s that are inserted into a blown glass globe filled with glycerin. A man named Horace Welch invented it back in the 1920’s and his creation became very popular in the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s. I doubt mine is a Welch as I can’t find any markings on it and besides, he was probably long gone by the time I got mine. Opalite was a big producer in those years.
The globes are susceptible to bursting or breaking and apparently, mine joined those ranks. Frantic, I immediately got on the internet to search for an opal jewelry repairer (with very little hope) and Hallelujah!, I found one in Oklahoma City. I called him, got shipping details and sent it to him. Believe me when I say, all of this was based on total faith that I would get my opal back. I think I insured it for $500 and it was probably worth maybe $50. The sentimental value was the big deal. I just prayed I got my opal back, safe and sound. Sure enough, 2 weeks later, my opal arrived in my mail box. The jeweler had blown another globe for the opal flakes and fixed it up pretty as it ever was.
So you now know everything you need to know about floating opals. Aren’t you glad you asked?
What does this have to do with the farm or country life? OK, this is a stretch but us country folks can’t just hop into a car and drive to downtown OK City for repairs on old jewelry. We have to mail out stuff. Or plan a whole trip with the specific intention of jewelry repair. Not convenient at all. USPS, UPS and FedEx are our friends. Sometimes our only friends. With the advent of the internet, life is so much simpler. You search it, you find it, you order it, they mail it. Life is good!!
And the morale of the story? If it’s broke, someone out there in far beyond cyberspace is waiting for you to call them to fix it. I have found some of the most interesting people doing just that. I’m telling ya. Google it!!