Life in Tucson

Tucson Gem Show: A paradise for those who love “stones”

Aren’t they beautiful? The $1 bracelet 😀
Amethyst. Beautiful, but seriously I don’t know why I should buy it 🙈😅✌ I didn’t 😀

Today, February 10, 2018, I went to Tucson gem show. It was my second time. The first time I went to one was in 2015. Tucson gem show is held annually here. It’s held in different (various?) locations in Tucson and lasts for few days, usually at the beginning of the year. People from all over the world and the states come here to sell their products. Mostly it’s “stones”, different kinds of stones, but not just stones, there are some other stuff, too. And btw, it’s not “just” stones, it’s more like gems (?). But I don’t know much about it so to me they are just stones :p

So why I went there? Well, because I want to get new bracelets. My old bracelets were either lost or broken ☹ So I’d been braceletless till today. I got my favorite bracelets here in Tucson gem show back then when I went there in 2015. It wasn’t expensive. It’s just $1. That’s why. I mean, I love wearing my bracelets, but I cannot afford to buy the expensive ones, not only because I don’t have the money (I’m stingy anyway🙈😅✌), but if I bought the expensive one and it gets lost, ouch, it will be more problematic. Thus, because tomorrow is the last day for Tucson gem show, I decided to go to one today.

The bracelet that I end up buying.

I went to the one held in TEP park (now Kino Sports Complex) because that’s where I got my bracelet earlier. In addition, it’s open to public and free. I checked that not all places were like that. Some places were open only to certain group of people and we had to register or pay. Boy, you know that’s not where I want to go. I don’t like spending my money unnecessarily like that :p So at 9.30ish a.m. my friend and I took a bus to Kino Sports Complex. It’s Saturday so only few buses operated but, well, we got there anyway. Arriving at Tucson gem show, I immediately went into one of the tents and tried to find the bracelets that look like my old ones. (Yeah, I’m that type who finds it hard to “move on” from my last bracelets! :p )

Another display in Tucson Gem Show.

But gosh, they’re all beautiful 😭😭😭😍😍😍 It’s one of my weaknesses! But then I checked the prices. I mean, if we can buy something with cheaper price, why not, right? I found some but they were like above $2, and some were sold in packages (like 5-10 same bracelets in one bundle) and I was like, “Man, if I remember correctly, I bought mine only for $1, and no, if I were to buy more than one bracelet, I would want to buy different kinds or colors”. And that’s it, good things come to those who wait. I kept on walking the aisles and searching for my desired bracelets, and I finally found the ones sold for $1. I ended up buying more than 1 bracelet because they’re all beautiful!!! Well, I could switch my bracelet every day, right? I mean, like wearing different bracelet each day 😍😍😍 I can match the color with the colors of my clothes and hijabs, too. (Yes, I’m crazy about colors!!! 🙈🙈😍😍). Besides, I think I need to spoil myself once in a while too by buying the stuff that I like. We live only once anyway 😜 (Yes, I’m quite good at making excuses or justifying my actions 😂😂🙈✌✌).

 

Maybe because I don’t have that much money, so I can’t see myself spending $165 on this thing. I’d rather buy something else. Food. Traveling ticket. Etc.
Another type of stone. I forgot the name.

However, as I was standing in line for the cashier to pay, I saw other kinds of bracelets that were sold for the same $1 price. They were beautiful ❤😅 So I ended up buying some more. But I had to stay within the budget, so I asked my friend to return some that I picked earlier to their place so that I could buy the bracelets that I found while queuing. I was worried, though. I was worried that the bracelets I picked actually cost more than $1 each because in the writing they had something like “$1 not including the amethyst, or $1 not including the premium stones” etc. And I had no idea which would count as amethyst or premium stones. It wouldn’t be funny if I reached the cashier and found out that it cost more that I expected. So, when I came at the cashier (the line was moderately long), I asked to make sure that all of them were $1 each. It turned out that 3 of them were $1.5 each, so I returned one and just took 9 (yes, I’m crazy! 🙈😂✌✌✌). I paid $11, and got 15 cents change, so I spent 10.85. I guess it’s plus the tax. And oh, the cashier smiled when I paid with cash because that’s how it’s supposed to be. I guess he wondered how I knew that. Well, there’s this notice telling us that they won’t accept credit card if we buy less than $15. Mine is less than $15, and I still remember this from past experience. Thus, I prepared some cash from home. And for me this wasn’t expensive, I mean, $1/each is not expensive. However, if I were to buy this in Indonesia, with the same price $1 converted to IDR, well, I don’t think I’d buy that many. I mean, $1 in Indonesia can be used to get a bowl of tasty heavenly delicious meatballs or other kinds of delicious food, so, no, I won’t buy it in Indonesia. But here, things were different, I can’t get proper meal with just $1, so $1 for one bracelet is ok. Yes, that’s how I make my calculations. Probably because I grew up in a poor family, so I really want to spend my money on a good cause, and food will always be my priority or “standard”. But anyway, I was happy 😊

The food court area in Tucson Gem Show at TEP Park/Kino Sports Complex.
The Pad Thai that we bought for $9. It tastes good actually 🙂

Then, we just strolled around to see what else was there. We first went to the food court area. It wasn’t a fancy food court, just some foodstalls. Unfortunately, most of them only accepted cash, no cards. And we wanted to buy this pad thai. It was $9 (quite expensive for me. LoL). But, well, for once in a while, I guess it’s ok. Hhe The problem was, I ran out of cash. Haha I brought only $15 cash with me. I didn’t plan to buy that many bracelets, so, well, I only $4.15 left 🙈😅🤦). Well, I was hungry, but I didn’t really want to buy it considering the price, but my friend was hungry and she didn’t have $9 in cash either.

 

The racoon tails…

So we just used my $4 and her $5 to get that Pad Thai and ate it together. Haha So romantic. LoL but the portion was small, it didn’t make me full. I was still hungry. Luckily I brought some snacks and water (because I knew food will be expensive at such events 😌). Then we just strolled around and took some pictures. Some people must think it weird for us to take pictures at such places 😄🙈😂😅). I took a picture of the people, because I love Tucson community. They’re nice and friendly. We’re basically like family 😊 I also took a pic of the portable toilets, just because it isn’t common in my country. I want to share such things with people from back home. I also found some racoon tails (the properties of other animals) sold in Tucson gem show. I feel like…I don’t know. I just can’t digest it well. I mean, why would they kill such animals for that? I am ok with wearing synthetic fur or such, but wearing one from the animal is like, yew, no, and I’ll feel sorry for the animals too ☹ But I don’t want to be a hypocrite myself either. I mean, I do eat meat, and to get the meat, the animal is killed. But that’s for food. And, oh, I dunno. I have my justification and excuse, so maybe they have theirs, too. So maybe that’’s how my vegan or vegetarian friends feel about me eating meats. *sigh

Right after I took this pic, I got “reprimanded”, so I wasn’t sure if it is okay to post it here. Let me know if it’s not okay.

And, oh, there is this one thing that happened. I took a picture while in one of the tents; it was the busiest tent I guess. Then the seller told me to delete the pic and that taking pictures wasn’t allowed. I told him I didn’t take a pic of his vendor. I showed him the pictures that I took. But it makes me feel so bad – and mad. I mean, I remember when I went here last time, there was a sign in some of the tents that forbade us to take pictures. But this time, I didn’t see any. Besides, I didn’t take pictures of the products or the designs of the jewelry they sold. I just wanted to capture the crowd. It’s just amazing for me that people can just walk by, see the jewelries unattended, then walk to the cashier to pay for what they bought. Had it been in my country, I think some people would just snatch them without paying. *Sigh Yeah, not all people in my country are like that, of course. But I just can’t imagine how the same things can work the same there. Anyway, what the seller has made me feel bad and mad. I got what I wanted. And so we decided to go back home. And that’s it 😊

 

The graffiti 🙁

PS: While waiting for the bus in Broadway/Alvernon bus stop, I saw this grafitti that says “Niggers are stupid”. I was dumbfounded. Well, actually my friend saw it first and she told me. I took a picture of it and posted it to my Facebook. My Tucson friend said that I should call the officials and report it. I was actually anxious to deal with such officers, but then I found that I could actually do it online. I prefer written reports, so, I did report it, hopefully they remove it soon.

 

Updated: February 12, 2018. I finally got the chance to organize my bracelets, and guess what? I found 10 instead of 9! I’m not sure how it happened. Could it be that the cashier gave me one as a bonus? Or is it a mistake? He could’ve put it in the bag accidentally along with the bracelets that I bought. I don’t know. If it’s the first, I hope Good bless him his whole life and returns his kindness more and more. (And I feel bad because it means I didn’t get to thank him 🙁 ) If it’s the latter, then I hope he won’t be scolded by the boss. And I’m sorry since it means I have to pay for it yet I didn’t 🙁

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