JournalismPakistan.com October 26, 2014
In every home there are things that are purchased primarily with the idea of not being used.
This fact was brought home to me when I suggested that the silver tea-set on a silver salver given to us by my parents who had the set given to them a generation earlier, should be trotted out now and then, and since we had some people coming over why not inaugurate it now.
I was asked not to be silly. No one actually serves tea in a silver tea-set.
Then, I asked, “why were we so excited when it was presented to us”?
I was informed that silver tea-sets are wonderful things to put inside sideboards but actually using them is ostentatious.
We have now exhausted several bottles of ‘Gerard Silver Polish’ to maintain the glory of the three piece plus tray – King’s Own pattern tea-set, but we have yet to pour tea into the pot, milk into the jug or place sugar into the bowl.
I am led to believe by a friend of mine that such items are kept for special occasions but nowhere is it defined what such a special occasion constitutes!
He should know. He lugged 12 superbly cut crystal goblets all the way from Geneva in 2007 but he has not yet been allowed to pour anything into them. The light, he says, is on a perpetual amber, but I never get the green.
Whenever someone important enough is over he safaris to the cupboard only to be thwarted with a caution. What if one breaks and the set is ruined, after all each one costs 80 a fortune, can you sit there comfortably waiting to see if someone drops it or the cook chips it washing up, it’s safer to use the standard stuff!
So the goblets stay unsullied, no lips have yet touched their pristine rim.
We do this with crockery, cutlery even those silk bed-sheets we bought on the trip to Hong Kong four years ago but haven’t spread because you cannot use such expensive stuff on a daily basis!
Go on, admit it. Your house has suitcases full of good things you have squirreled away for another day, or what we call the right time.
Much of the spirit behind this buy and keep exercise is motivated by a desire to have ‘our own house.’ When we have it we shall take out our ‘best’ stuff.
Till then keep them locked away… it is such a good feeling.
(The writer is a Senior Editorial Advisor of Khaleej Times and the paper’s former Editor. He has also been the Editor of Gulf News, Gulf Today, Emirates Today and Bahrain Tribune)
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