Posted by: Valerie | July 11, 2010

What a lovely auction! We had fun!

It’s Sunday afternoon and for the very last time I am having my ears assaulted by millions of vavu-what’s-its. Joe is firmly installed in front of The Game. It’s after half-time and nothing much seems to be happening but no doubt there will eventually be a result. Then when it’s all over, what shall we all do? No soccer, no tennis. I guess we’ll have to get on with our lives.  

What a lovely time we had yesterday! Up early to a beautiful day, clear and warm, without the stifling heat and humidity of the last week. Off for breakfast to our favourite place, the Swiss Bear at the nearby village of Apsley. The Bear is also a fine quality bakery run by a Swiss family (surprised?) and they give their brekkies a Swiss touch with the addition of rösti instead of greasy hash browns and always provide a little dish of fruit on the side. They are not fast so we read the Saturday paper while we waited and swilled their excellent coffee.  

Still only 9.00 a.m. and we made our way to the Apsley auction hall (community centre on other days) to inspect the goods laid out for sale. It has been a long time since we last went auctioning, it being rather a danger to the bank account. However Joe started off as one of the first bidders and never looked back.   

It was a good auction, particularly for the auctioneer, as the local crowd was well outnumbered by the summer cottagers and the prices were higher than usual. There was some real quality stuff including some lovely old Quebec furniture, a gorgeous handmade canoe which was withdrawn at $4,500, a large quantity of Belleek porcelain.  Joe bought a Pentax camera complete in its original case with several lenses for $45.00. We have no idea if it works or not but if it does we may have it reconditioned and actually use it. Joe has a large collection of old cameras but I don’t think you would want to use any of them – but then most of them were picked up at yard sales for a couple of bucks. 

 I didn’t buy nearly as much as Joe – I never do – but what I did get! I can’t express how delighted I am. I bought a WW I officer’s portable table with folding legs. It’s oak, in good but not absolutely perfect condition and it is exactly what I have been looking for to display the lovely Edwardian ewer and basin that I bought at the same place about a year ago. A fellow bidder said he saw an identical table sell for $300 at an auction in Toronto. I paid $125. Here it is!   


Isn’t it terrific?

Last week we had a visit from Joe’s grandson, Matt, and his girlfriend Tara. It was sooooo hot and we do not have air-conditioning so I suggested that they might like to bring a tent and sleep outdoors, the bedroom level being completely unbearable. (The master is on the main floor and has a large, silent ceiling fan so we’re OK.) It’s almost twenty years since I last went tenting and I was very impressed by the ease with which Tara popped their tent up. Five minutes and there it was – sling the sleeping bags in, shoo out the mozzies and ZZZZZZZ. I do like zzzzeds, don’t you? They are so handy in Scrabble.  

 Matt and Tara went off swimming at a nearby lake (ours is a bit weedy and has snapping turtles) and returned in a few hours, showing definite signs of sun exposure. A little later Matt wasn’t at all well although he maintained it wasn’t sun exposure. Matt is a very tall young man and we always provide lots of food when he is around. But he couldn’t eat a thing and Tara is a little thing with a tiny appetite so we were left chewing our way through left-over barbecued pork chops for what seemed like days! Glad to report that Matt is OK now.  

Matt and Tara

Matt and Tara

  I was hoping to be able to show a photo of my newly restored diamond and sapphire ring but when I went to pick it up last week, it turned out that it had been forgotten and not even touched so I will have to wait another week. Pooh!  

 Coming up, we have a trip to Ottawa next weekend to attend the first birthday party of young Master Deklin. Joe will come with me this time and we will do a little bit of touristing about, no doubt. A full report will follow!  

 In Johannesburg Spain is presently dancing around waving the World Cup and the Dutch are looking glum so I guess I’d better go and produce some dinner.  


  1. I’m glad that you didn’t buy Belleek–the advent of the internet has killed the market–howver if it sold well up there I will be willing to ship up quantities of the stuff to them!! I love the table with the afore-purchased wash set–elegant.

    Your weather sounds great–106 here yesterday and the monsoons are late–ugh!!

    Have a great weekend in the big city.

    • I don’t think the Belleek got the prices they were hoping for. It’s not my sort of thing so I was never in danger of buying it.

      As much as you couldn’t stand our winters, I couldn’t take your summers! Hope that monsoon comes soon.

  2. Love the table, the auctions sound like fun.

    I was driving to work this morning waiting to hear the result of the football as it was being played. Sooooo that means NEW ZEALAND was the ONLY unbeaten team in the whole cup!!!! :o)

    The Swiss restaurant sounds nice. My father-n-law is Swiss.

    Glad Matt is ok and look forward to seeing the ring.

  3. That makes a beautiful vignette. Did you get any kind of provenance with the table and wash stand set? They are beautiful.

    Visiting a couple last Sunday, we were saying goodbye and as I turned, my purse knocked a tall antique vase off a small table and smashed to smithereens on the floor. It gives me shivers to see that beautiful set in such a vulnerable spot.
    I hope your cat doesn’t get too frisky and do what I did. I feel much like a bull in a china shop.

    It is a very unusual set of pitcher and bowl. Can you tell us more about it?

    • Oh, my goodness, Betty, I can imagine how dreadful you must feel. I think I’d just set myself on fire!

      No, there was no provenance with either the table or wash set. I know that the latter is Staffordshire (Wilkinson) made in 1906.

      I mean to do a bit of research on the officer’s table.

      Your point about the cat is valid.

  4. I am envious of the table – it is something I would love to have! But I have too much stuff as it is. Maybe if we moved and got rid of 3/4 of everything, I could get a few different things. I love little tables like that.

    As for what to do with no soccer… Tour de France!! It is on for another 2 weeks.

    Love the sound of your restaurant breakfast.

    Betty, I feel for you!

  5. Poor Betty–every time Bill and I go to a house full of porcelain in order to do an appraisal I shiver with fright, I make the client put things back in the cupboards as I am incapable of getting everything back without banging around!! And then still have half a dozen items on the floor looking like orphans!! that’s why I prefer to appraise fine art or silver.

  6. Z’s are indeed wonderful for scrabble – especially since the ridiculous OSPD4 allowed “za”. Pop it on a triple letter score going both ways and it’s a cool 62 points for a single letter play.

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