As pointed out in J.R.R. Tolkien’s book, The Lord of the Rings, rings have a mind of their own and can choose when to leave the finger. I saw this myself for the first time as I walked along the floating boardwalk at the Tacoma Yacht Club. A gold ring flew off my finger, bounced twice on the wooden planks and then rolled off the planed passageway into the waters between the boardwalk and the boathouses. I saw it enter the water and watched the yellow beacon as it flickered and sank below the waves of Puget Sound. It disappeared slowly.
In September of 2011, I was the Board Chair at TACID: Tacoma Association of Individuals with Disabilities. My buddies Dave Thomas and Roy Kimbel were the main Fundraising committee. We planned and ran the annual breakfast for several years. We were all members of the Rotary Club of Tacoma #8. Roy was paid a small fee under contract with TACID, but we all put in a lot of hard work and effort. We enjoyed and respected each other . . . and had a ball working together.
The theme of the breakfast fundraiser was Hidden Treasure, which was a nice fit describing people with disabilities. There are people with disabilities and TABS: people who are Temporarily Abled Bodied. At the time there was plenty of news about Spanish treasure ships being discovered, like the 1622 shipwreck of the Spanish Treasure Ship Atocha.
We were able to purchase an Atocha Coin Pendant: 14K Gold with a 2 Reale Silver coin (similar to this one) as a door prize. While I researched the pendant I found that I could purchase rings that were created from the silver ingots recovered from sunken treasure ships. Facing our 45th wedding anniversary in November of that year, I purchased matching silver rings for Peg and myself.
Peg’s ring is more delicate than mine was. My ring was plainer but more massive in comparison.
Later when people would notice my ring and ask about it, I would explain the origin and remark, “It’s a reminder to me that my wife is my treasure.” Men would nod, but women would sigh and say, “Oh, that is sooooo sweet.”
This September, while shopping at Grocery Outlet on Tacoma’s Sixth Avenue, I experienced the Tolkien Tenet. While checking out with the cashier by the front door, my ring jumped off my finger and disappeared in an instant. I felt it leave as if someone had tugged on it and spirited it away. I left my business card and have checked back several times, but it has not been found. Perhaps, it hit the floor rolling and began a journey seeking out a new temporary owner.
The imprint on my ring more resembles the traditional pieces of eight of swashbuckling pirate history and lore.
If my anniversary ring finds its way to your finger (size: 13.5), please, let me know. My left hand feels naked and my heart feels the loss. Being silver and not gold, it doesn’t have a lot of value, but to me it is very precious. I would be happy to reward anyone who finds the ring. I would live happily ever after, till the end of my days. Please, call Don at 253-752-8262.