The Sage uses his gavel

The Sage was taking great care of me. He slipped one of the kitchen staff a fiver to move all the tables into position, because they are solid oak and, he decided, too heavy for my feeble old body. For once, we also had time to have a nice cup of tea before people came crowding in at the start of the view (they always start to arrive well before the advertised time).

There are always newcomers, too. Some of our buyers have been coming ever since the start of our specialist china sales in November 1983, but a few more turn up every time – this does not mean it’s a complete crush of course, because others have fallen by the wayside in one way or another in the meantime. With twenty different vendors and nearly fifty different buyers, as well as lookers and unsuccessful bidders, it makes for a good many interested people.

I’ll put the prices up and, if I get around to it, write a sale report and put them on our website in the next week and put in a link. The two pieces I liked best, an early saucer and a beautifully painted coffee pot, went for higher prices than I’d have been able to pay, so it’s just as well I wasn’t bidding. I’m glad they were appreciated.

I find that driving in Lowestoft is very confusing now. They have reorganised the whole traffic system recently, pedestrianising some roads and making others that have been one-way for the last few decades two-way again. When you’re used to getting into the right-hand lane and you realise that there are oncoming cars in it, it’s disconcerting, as is driving the wrong way down the street.

During the sale, it occurred to me that El, Phil and Ro had all arrived by train and we needed the back seat of the car, or most of it, for all the stuff to take home – about twenty lots had been bought by absent bidders who had given their bids to the Sage beforehand or bid on the phone, and we had to take them back with us. Then there were all the fitted boxes the china had been brought in, the computer and printer, the chiller for our food…this could be quite a problem. Luckily, lovely Charmian was with us and after the sale I asked her if she could help out. She drove El and Phil the extra three miles from her house to ours. We hadn’t expected any difficulty as Al had hoped to join us, but wasn’t able to in the end.

We’ve all had a really good couple of days since, chatting and catching up with news. Back to the grindstone now – I’m out all day tomorrow, so will do tomorrow’s work tonight.

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