I think the first time I fell in love with Jade was when I was living in Sabah. Someone had donated a jade necklace as part of the offering in the Catholic church and my cousin bought it from the church. It was an antique jewellery set and very pretty. My cousin fluffed her plumes and strutted around wearing the beautiful necklace, revelling in the attention.. because everyone knew she paid more than the market value for the jade..because the money was going to the church.. for a good cause. What no one noticed was that it was a flawless piece of imperial jade.. easily 50 years old and that for someone to donate such a valuable heirloom, there had to be a reason.. I felt the church should have kept it.
I have always watched the older Chinese women wearing jade ornaments and thought they looked really beautiful..
Years later, my mother wanted a jade pendant and I went looking around for a perfect jade..and due to my political convictions, I even made sure that the jade wasn’t from Myanmar..
I never really bought jade for myself.. not sure why I didn’t.. Not that Jade was very expensive.. there is something about finding that perfect piece of jewellery.. I never got around to it.
When I visited NZ, I kept finding jade jewellery in every shop we went to and I kept thinking the next shop will have something even better.. this went on. till I reached the airport and realized the price was easily 10 times more at the airport and I didn’t like anything they had at the airport..
Jade comes in various colours, my favourite is Kingfisher jade that is semi transparent. The green of kingfisher jade reminds of me of the green in Kerala after the monsoon rain..
I did tell him the story of my ill luck finding the perfect jade months ago.. But I didn’t tell him the colour I like. He had never been to Kerala.. and he wouldn’t have understood what I mean when I talk about monsoon green..
He bought me wine from NZ ( pinot noir, cause I am really partial to that). He collected Manuka shampoo and conditioner from the hotels he stayed in NZ, because he felt I deserve only the best.. He bought raspberry and vanilla body soap..I had assumed he would buy lemon and mint cause he knows it is my favourite..But he opted for the raspberry one because I did tell him long ago that my adopted daughter had brought it with her when she came to stay with me and it smelled divine..He even bought stuff for the kids..
The thing is, I knew he was going to get all these.. and I really wasn’t surprised.
Finally, with a beautiful smile that lit his face up and with a twinkle in his eyes, he then handed me a very small parcel…. really really small parcel..
“What is inside?” I asked him..I am not good with surprises that I can’t predict..
“You should open it” He replied
I felt outside the parcel.. I couldn’t figure out what it was.
I looked at him..he looked so happy.. as if he knew this was something that would make me really happy.. I really had to see what he got for me, so I tore open the paper cover.. and inside was a small kingfisher jade pendant..