December began on a happy note for me, kind of an early Christmas present. The price of gold fell from its heights of a couple of thousand dollars to somewhere a bit more reasonable. I would still prefer if it fell to an even lower number. That reality is yet to come and only the future will tell. Normally… “Normally?” What the heck is normal anymore? Well, what I personally considered normal, the price of gold would rise in late October or early November and then decline in price by February; it’s doing the opposite as I speak. Good for me and good for you, or at least those of you who have fine jewelry on your holiday shopping lists.
People who invested in gold comedies, not so happy… Serves you right to suffer. In my opinion, they caused the whole overpriced metal market fiasco in the first place, Platinum is cheaper than gold, what kind of nonsense is that? Platinum is rarer and more difficult to mine, and don’t get me going about a simple white and now a very precious metal… palladium, a metal most people never even heard of. In the year 2008, another nightmare year in my industry in case you forgot, palladium was $167 an ounce. Today’s market price it’s over $2,300!!!
Lordy, if I only knew. Now, what I didn’t know then…? A $10,000 investment back then would give you a $138,000 return today!!! Now that’s darn good a 12–year investment.
For those folks that invested in gold in the late 70s, it took them over 30 years to see a dollar of profit. I was perfectly happy with nice gold jewelry being affordable to most of the population, instead of to only to a small percentage. Or so I thought?
Remarkably, despite the pandemic, a shaky economy and the current political fiasco, I’m still in business selling diamonds, some nice gold jewelry and my repair business is up 30% over last year when most of the known world seems to be packing up its handbasket for a long trip to Hades? The reason? Maybe it took 27 years to become well known, or our reputation has finally preceded us? Maybe word got around the island that, hoax or not… My staff and I practice all means possible to keep anyone who’s coming and going safe and secure.
There is Plexiglas over the showcases, customer distancing, a hand sanitizing station, and a blacklight sanitizing box for neutralizing germs on in and outgoing jewelry and watches.
This includes my staff cleaning like crazy; and not just the showcase tops. I’m even sanitizing the public bench out front. We do the whole nine yards. Many merchants on the island are now doing the same, some are not, to each their own, and that’s their choice. I have been alert and aware—keeping it safe since I reopened in June. I’ll go out on a limb here now… To me it’s not a political thing, even though I have friends, even relatives who don’t agree with me, it’s a simple courtesy and respect for my friends, customers, and especially my employees that include an elderly Mom and immediate family who service hundreds of presumably healthy souls from all corners of the globe on any given day. Heck! I’m personally taking no chances, I’m not exactly a proverbial spring chicken either!
It’s your God–given right if you refuse to wear a mask upon entering my shop and yes… you will still get outstanding service. It’s also my right to protect myself and my loved ones by strategically distributing Plexiglas, mask use, the utilization of sanitizer and Lysol. So please don’t criticize us and 99% of my clients for wearing one. It’s simple common sense like wearing a seatbelt or learning to swim before you walk in over your head off resident’s beach; it’s also respect for your fellow islanders and guests. “A little courtesy won’t kill you.” Like I once mentioned, I’ve seen even the disbelievers get visibly irked and uncomfortable when an unmasked patron at an eatery starts hacking and coughing uncontrollably.
Okay, I’ll now jump from the soapbox to the jewelry gift box. A promising holiday shopping season appears to be instore and what is the hottest item is hard to tell, at this point, diamonds… Here I go again, flaunting political correctness diamonds are still, “A Girl’s Best Friend” and sea life jewelry is by far in big demand. So, happy shopping and wishing you all a very Happy Holiday Season and a COVID free New Year!
Richard Alan is a designer/goldsmith the owner of the Harbor Goldsmith serving Marco Island and the known world since 1994. He welcomes your questions and comments at www.harborgoldsmith.com.