Art and I just returned from the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show, triumphant with a small collection of exceptional Arizona fire agates and Australian and Mexican opals. The Mexican fire opals are from the mines in Magdalena and the Arizona fire agates are from the Slaughter Mountain Apache Indian reservation. Most of the Australian opals are from Lightening Ridge.
Before our son John started college, he would go with me on this important buying trip and his exceptional eye for quality was an asset, but this year Art accompanied me for the first time. He too has a discerning eye and it was fun to share the experience with him.
The Tucson gem and mineral show is a visual overload with over 40 significant venues; a multi-cultural marketplace for buyers and sellers from all parts of the globe. The convention center hosts the AGTA show but there are shows scattered throughout Tucson. Dozens of tents, the size of football fields are packed with vendors and half the downtown hotels are taken over by gem, mineral and fossil dealers. What I need now is time to create new designs incorporating many of these newly acquired treasures.
Life sized dinosaurs frolic in the playground of a Tucson hotel hosting one of the many fossil shows.