Sunday, March 23, 2008

My Precious

What: Waterford Crystal Lismore Carafe and Wine Set
Where: (it came from) Ireland (Waterford Crystal is originated from Waterford, Ireland)
When: (was it given) February 2004
Who: (gave it) ADLK colleagues (ADI Limerick TSM team - design, design evaluation and test development engineers)
Why: (was it given) Wedding gift (given few weeks earlier than the wedding date)
How: Handcarried by my (former) offshore boss

I've been assigned (years ago - while I was still working for ADI) for few months offshore "work" in ADI Ireland (which we also call ADLK) for three consecutive years but I never had the courage to buy even a small piece of artwork from Waterford Crystal because of it's "for your eyes only" price tags. Few of my Filipino colleagues who have earned their target savings from our per diem allowances have bought themselves a small piece or two while what most of us, who visited the main outlet in Waterford county, only did "window shopping" and of course, picture taking.

I must be very lucky to have worked with the entire TSM-LK team who were so generous to buy me (and my soon to be hubby at that time), not just a small piece from the crystal store, but a big item - not one piece - but a set of three.

On February 2004, few weeks before our wedding set on March 6 of the same year, my Irish boss went to visit the Philippines plant (ADGT) for business meetings with the management, and with our local team as well. On the day he went to Cavite, he went down to our workplace carrying a huge paper bag. Some of my colleagues started to look as he headed to my seat, said his hello, offered me a handshake, gave me a hug and a kiss, and finally handed me that huge paper bag.

At the glance of it, all I can do is smile (and I think my smile was from ear to ear). The package inside was triangular with the mark "Waterford Crystal". Actually, the huge paper bag itself was marked with the said brandname. He said it's from the whole of TSM-LK team. Inside the bag was also a huge greeting card which I opened right after he left my seat. I was so happy to see the familiar names from those I've worked with and those that I just knew by name and face.

When he left, one of my friends approached me and said "I bet that costs __K Php". On the other hand, my local boss uttered "Lucky you!" followed by "Maybe I should get married again so I can receive the same gift package as yours." One friend, who just heard from others about the present, came to me asking, "hey, can you open it now for everyone to see?" Other colleagues from different work area also came to curiously ask what's inside the huge paper bag.

Since the set was given before our wedding, my housemate and friend (who was also trying to quote the set) suggested (or actually insisted) that we should use it on our wedding day for the wine toasting part of the wedding (reception) ceremony.

We then brought the set, handled with all loving care, along with us when we went up to Baguio a week before our wedding date. I had to instruct the hotel wedding attendant several times to ensure that the set will be used during our reception and that it should be brought back to us after the reception. Oh well, I didn't have to tell them what to do after the wedding party as I made sure myself that the set is carried back to our room while the reception area was being cleaned up.

The triangular packaging is still intact up to now, that huge paper bag has been crumpled though. After our recent vacation, I surfed the net if the item is still available (partly checking on the price as well) and I found out that the current packaging is not as how we received it. The wine glasses also looked different but I found the same design sold separately.

By the way, it's not that I am after the materiality of the present that I consider this item a precious. (well, I could say it's part of it - call me hyprocrite if I don't admit that, right?) It's more of its representation of a country I hold dear in my heart - Ireland. A place I wish my family could visit someday.


Bill Bilig said...

Lucky you indeed :-) Looks really expensive even in the picture.

You didn't open the gift in front of the one who gave it? Kasi iyon yata practice ng mga puti. Hope the gift giver understood that our Filipino practice is to open it later, i.e., not in front of the one who gave it.

Hey, Ireland is one country I like to visit in my dreams apart from Tibet. You're double lucky that you went there. Cheers

ShiSheng said...

Yeah, someday I'll go back there with my cam of course. I missed the walk along the shannon river, the view of the parking area of rosehill, grand!

TruBlue said...

Saw a documentary years ago of how Irish people makes these precious glasses and it's too labor intensive. They're priceless. Reckon the IRA and Brits won't harm me if I visit Northern Ireland one of these days, I'm both Catholic and Protestant. Will have no problem reciting the "Lord's Prayer" in both denominations, hehe...
Take very good care of those precious gifts. We have nothing left of those "waterford glasses, most were stolen during our few moves, and some were broken.
Cheers to you and goodhealth.

KK aka Tina said...

wow, looks very precious indeed. I didn't know that they made crystal ware in Ireland until now. I hope you will be able to visit the country someday!

Jane said...

Thanks to all for your comments.
Hi Bill, no I didn't! It never dawned to me :) but I remembered opening the card (a bit) infront of him.Hopefully, he didn't mind and that he understood our practice. BTW, Taiwanese people also open gifts infront of the gift giver, including the "hum-pao" or "ampaw" (red envelope). Tibet's on an unstable condition lately, maybe you should visit Ireland first :) There are many kailyans in Dublin now :)

Shisheng, yeah, someday, we'll all go back there, ahihihi. See you there ;)

Hi Trublue,indeed they are priceless!Good thing the box is still ok otherwise, I don't know how and where to store the set.Haven't used it after the wedding yet. Sorry to hear about the lost and broken WC glasses.Maybe it's time to buy new ones :) A friend lost his figurine in the office area, if I were him, I wouldn't dare displaying it there. Maybe he thought nobody knew it was a real crystal.

Tina,yup, hopefully, the family can visit the place in the near future.