Rusty little tins with window tops as lids, gave view to precious antique gems that had high hopes to be placed in a crown.
Peering into the tiny windows I could see the stones were not necessarily classified by color or by type. Biting my lip I asked the dealer if I could mix-n-match some stones into one rusty tin box for myself. He looked at me like I was a rusty tin box..."I guess that means no-huh?" He nodded his head yes.
A second plan came to mind..."How much again for each box?"
"$40." Flatly without any fanfare he muttered.
"If I paid you double to mix-n-match one box, what would you say?" He turned away and walked to the end of the table without given me a verbal answer, this wasn't easy.
I don't like dealing with grumpy dealers, especially when my toes are frozen! "Okay, what if I bought a few tin boxes; what better price would you give me?" Slowly he turned around looked at me, and without even cracking a smile he said, "How many boxes are you thinking to buy?" Calculating quickly by trying to see the doorway to a cheaper price in his eye I added, "Four or five of them?" His eyes did not twinkle when he said, "Four boxes $160, five boxes $200."
Gee, not even two cents less! I glanced at the tin boxes and blew a kiss towards my crown of wishful thinking. Sometimes kissing a French frog doesn't bring you a Prince.
"Excuse-me?! Can I at least take a photo?" He didn't say no.....though you might say he didn't say yes either.
*Saw these at the flea market long ago in Paris. If these were semi-precious stones... $20 a box was a very good deal to be had.