Monday, April 27, 2009

For Me.



I realize, I write this blog for me. It takes way more time than I have. But yet I find myself thinking throughout the day of different topics, feelings and events that I want to blog about.

Life has thrown me a couple of curve balls lately. One day last week, my right breast was very sore. I could feel a fever. I made my first OBGYN appointment in years and it seems all is ok, but I'll have the mammogram to be sure. The doc didn't give any explanation, but her nonchalance was enough to assuaged my mind. I try not to give too much thought to what can go wrong, to the big C. I don't want what's in my mind traveling. But just because i put the effort not to, means I put more effort to the negative than I like. About 6 years ago, when i felt a lump, which turned out to be only a milk duct hardening, I heard a distinct voice tell me I have 3 years. I was half asleep but it jolted me up right. Well that 3 years has long passed, but still it's always in the back of my mind.

The first curve came during our show last week. Six years ago, I found an equestrian artist whose work I loved. I had actually seen a piece on a fellow vendor at a show in Bend, Oregon. She mentioned the artist lived South off I-5 in Oregon. She explained that the person was trying to get off the road and would be very interested in someone selling her jewelry. I probably would have left it to that, but as we were traveling back down to CA, our slide on our RV malfunctioned. So we had to stop off in Ashland, Oregon, home of the artist whose work I had just been introduced to. I gave her a call. Sher came to the camper and thus a relationship developed. We sold Sher's items ordering pieces I loved, then selling a majority on consignment. It seem to work ok. Turns out pieces were harder to sell than I'd like and that made it less likely for me to buy, but I liked the consignment. And she had her pieces showing in shows as opposed to her having the expense of going far distances and paying exorbitant booth fee. I always payed her after every show and shipped back what she needed.

About three months ago, she and i started working on a consignment piece together. I had a national horse food company wanting a piece for a retiring Olympic dressage rider that they sponsored. I gave the work to Sher, I knew she needed it and i also knew she was good. It didn't work out. The big company didn't want to pay the price in the end. They wanted to trade for sponsorship. It didn't jive. I agreed with Sher, that they were not worth it.

So here comes the biggest show of our Equestrian history. Booth space is a premium ($6,500 a pop). We have workers. I retrieved Sher's items from a British women who'd been trying to sell them in the UK. She hadn't sold a one in six months. Sher flies in on Friday and I have 3 cases with her items in it. I introduce her to some potential buyers who are interested in her pieces. She then proceeds to take my customers out of my booth and down another row and start negotiating with them on a pieces that she had brought with her. Sher and I had been in a partnership for 6 years! I was a legit vendor selling in my very expensive real estate! and I had her come up and take my customers out of my booth to trade under the table. Not on.

So I handled it. Probably not the best way, but maybe. Granted I was livid, but I never called her names or criticized her work or went beyond the obvious. I was hurt. She had stabbed me in the back. I took all her pieces down immediately and told her I'd return them as soon as I found time to inventory. So the next day during a break, she got all her items and money for the one piece I sold and the relationship was severed. Funny enough, I had a customer call today, she'd bought a fabulous piece of Sher's at a trade show in Feb. and everyone loved it, esp. her mother, whom she'd like to buy another one for. I gave her Sher's number.

Truly, I hold no hard feelings. I'm hurt, but more than that I feel for her. She has more things to work out than I do when it comes to my regards for her.

So on to better news. I have recently found a cause, I am dedicated to. It is the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation. I have met a few of the young survivors and their family. These children are inspiring. The live with brain operations as a regular occurrence and know their chance of a long life is just a chance. This week I helped at a garage sale where the profits go to the PBTF. There were many donations and it was a lot of organizing. So many people came to help, and the family's of children with PFTs were there as well. I'll write more on this as time goes by.

1 comment:

The rock said...

I feel with you Elizabeth. Sounds like you handled it strong, I like that about you. We've had that happed in our business too. I always trust before I have any proof to, and last we got burned by the woman that rented us the house we just moved from. She lied in her emails and I did not catch it, I was angry with myself but then grateful that it got us to the town we wanted to be in. Love you and miss you, Petra