Tucson’s weather is fantastic; perfect for hiking around town. The search for the Bolivian Amethyst and Watermelon Tourmaline continues as we travel down to the ‘Strip’, original site of the Tucson Gem & Mineral Show. In this area of town, fossils are prominent. The reconstruction of these skeletal remains is museum-quality. Children and adults alike are captivated by sight of this massive ground sloth.
We met a lovely vendor, or more precisely, a wonderful family from India. Their hand-made wands in amethyst and tiger eye are astounding, each having an exquisitely carved deity at the termination. We have just agreed to the purchase of the only double-sided amethyst wand, only to have it fall to the ground and chip during packaging. Don’t know who is more heart-sick, the young vendor or us! We console one another and look for other products. Charming mini pyramid sets in the colors/gemstones of the seven chakras are among the products we’ll be bringing home. As they were fond of saying, “The price is always good when you buy in quantity.” We are delighted by this new contact and promise to return when their remaining merchandise arrives.
Among the many vendors are the miners from The Weather Channel’s hit show, Prospectors; http://www.weather.com/tv/tvshows/prospectors/main. We are thrilled as we have watched their toils, triumphs and tribulations for the past two years. Becky is photographed with Travis, Amanda and Amanda’s daughter. Though normally reticent, she spends time sharing with Travis, praising his support of Amanda. As a buyer used to dealing with miners, it is wonderful to see a woman working a claim. Amanda is surprisingly shy when admired as a positive role-model.
Merchants from Afghanistan have wonderful light green ‘Jade’. Though their attribution is suspect (it may be Serpentine), the material is too lovely to pass up. During our discussion, we noticed a small mound of Afghan tourmaline which is being sold by the lot. Sorting through the material, two Watermelon Tourmaline pieces are brought out and added to our stash. Now negotiations become serious, finally a compromise is reach and all parties are happy. Score!
We end the day at Blue Willow Restaurant, a wonderful eatery featuring local cuisine. The herb-crusted rainbow trout is delicious and generous. Becky immediately remembered that last year we said we should share this dish as it is enough for two. Over-stuffed and desert in hand, we waddle back to our hotel.