Monday, February 17, 2014

A Three Ring Circus...

The first ring the Cowman gave me was a cigar band, I still have it.  We had been dating for a while and were at the RB Roundup, where he was helping bring up calves for the roping events.  I had been setting on the hood of the ranch's old Scout for hours in the rain to watch him and the rodeo, when he rode up to check on me.  "How are you doing babe?"  "Great, Thanks," I said from under my ratty ol slicker.
"I have something for you," he said, then leaned over, kissed me, and slipped the cigar band on my finger...

The second ring the Cowman gave me, when we married, was a simple band of gold.  I was happy with that simple ring, having never been much of a jewelry wearer.  Many months into married life I mentioned to him how terribly impressed I was that he had my ring inscribed on the inside.  With a bit of a puzzled look and a raised eyebrow he said, "What?"  And that's how I found out there was a brand of wedding rings marketed by the name True Love.  I couldn't help laughing, the look on his face said "I'm going to hear about this til the end of time."  Nope, I never mentioned it again. He had been straight up honest about it.
The third ring the Cowman gave me came via his maternal grandmother.  It was a large diamond inset into a platinum band.  The Cowman took it to a local jewelry designer and was informed that it was an old fashioned cut, and needed to be set up on prongs so that it could catch the light. The diamond in it's new setting was beautiful. Ever aware that this was a family heirloom, I hesitated to wear it much. The Cowman said not to worry, wear it, that gran would be disappointed if I didn't! Even so, I tried never to wear it when we were doing something rough & tumble.

As my fate would have it, I forgot to take it off one day while we were working a rough bunch of cows through the chute.  We were knee deep in mud and cow shit and it was spitting rain.  There were two of us on each side of the chute: vaccinating, tagging, mouthing, and worming.  A cow hit the front of the chute hard, and one of the bars slammed my ring finger.  What followed was like when you're in an accident, everything seems to be happening in slow motion...  I watched as The diamond popped out of the ring and sailed over the chute to land in the muck on the other side. "STOP" I yelled.   I know you aren't going to believe this, but I'm always pretty quiet working cattle.  I was brought up that way, whether working cattle or hunting: no yelling, no sudden movement.  So when I yelled "Stop!" Everyone froze, including the rough ol hide in the chute.  "Please don't anyone move, I just lost my diamond."
There was no doubt in my mind, that I did not want to have to tell the Cowman's pistol pack'n grandmother that I had lost The diamond.  So I kept my eyes on the place I thought it had sunk into the muck, walked around the chute, stuck my hand in and with a bit of feeling around, found it! 
After the Cowman died I gave The diamond to Marymine, it's where it should be.


  1. Needle in a haystack -- or something less wholesome than that. It's a miracle that you recovered it, and yes, very appropriate that Marymine has the heirloom miracle diamond.

  2. Amazing you found it. I have a ring from my own grandma destined for my grand daughter. Lost mine once but someone else found it and returned it. Meant to be.

  3. Obviously you were meant to have it since it did not get lost! Wish I could say that about my first diamond and my first heirloom.

  4. Family diamonds in my family have a bad history. My paternal grandmother's diamond ring was stolen after it was given to my brother.

    My maternal grandmother's multi-generational, multi-diamond ring was given to me by my mother...who a few years later decided it should go to her sister instead. So I was forced to give it back. That was a painful episode.

  5. Burglars decided their need was greater than mine and stole my diamonds and all my family heirlooms from both my husbands mother and grandmother and my own side of the family too.

    I still have my memories and nobody can steal them.

  6. It definitely survived so many years for a reason and is where it belongs.
    Your "stop" must have been pretty fierce.

  7. Woo... Glad you 'found' it and you must have been pretty stern to stop that cow cold... :-)

  8. LL: The odds weren't with me, but I think the gods were afraid of gran. Marymine loves it, all good.

    CELIA: Good on you for passing yours forward. I hope there is a story for your granddaughter.

    TABOR: It was the only diamond I ever had, so it was special in a lot of ways. What happened to yours?

    KRIS: Welcome. I'm sorry yours did not have a good ending. My mother gave all her diamonds to her friends. There was no history attached to them, so I didn't care. They were just going to be tools of manipulation anyway.

    GRANNYMAR: That is sad. Your right, no one can steal your memories.

    ARKANSAS PATTI: It was pretty fierce, it stopped three grown men and a cranky cow!

    OLD NFO: Ah, the gods feared gran... If you click on the highlighted maternal grandmother link you can read why. As for the cow...

  9. Love the circularity of your story.

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  11. CHERI BLOCK: Ah Cheri, you have encouraged me to stretch in more ways than you will ever know. Thanks.