I got so excited as I drove the Expressway this week because some tents have gone up to signal the start of the annual gem show here in Tucson.
Hundreds of merchants prepare for weeks to set up attractive displays for the thousands of customers who descend on our happy city in the middle of nowhere. It is very unusual that so many could gravitate here, rather than anywhere else.
First the magazines start to arrive in the mail. Colorful photos of geodes, necklaces, and precious stones adorn the pages. All lure the wanting buyers to reserved rooms in busy hotels. Maps and floor plans are laid out in each brochure.
Next we see the U Hauls driving into town. We know they carry hidden goods: Persian rugs, Moroccan fossils, or African tribal masks. Those huge trucks have hidden destinations for just a little while. Soon we will see them unload all their carefully wrapped insides.
Later we spot the sellers toting their suitcases around the hotel lobbies and walkways. More hidden goodies for sale. A quick jot into a room, a quick business transition, a quick sale of gems leads to a duo-happy exchange.
During the next few weeks, I'll take a break from my Small White Hearts blog to share the gem show and the exciting events it brings to our town.