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This Vase

This vase came out of the dishwasher gleaming and reflecting sunlight like it was happy to be alive. It made me stop and pause because it seemed to hold so much joy.

This vase came directly from County Waterford, Ireland. If you are like me, you didn't know this was actually a place, rather just the brand name of crystal.

This vase was sitting on a table, in a box, with a number of other random items of crystal. They were hurriedly being sold off after the sale of one of the original Waterford factories. I could feel the panic, the urgency of the shoppers, like me, there to collect a piece of history before the doors closed forever.

This vase reminds me of the conversation I heard as I contemplated the items on the tables. Two employees were discussing the factory sale. They had worked there respectively over 30 years. They had been let go with no pension and no alternative with no ceremony.

This vase felt heavy in my hands as I paid the man who had given his life to Waterford and was still proud after wrapping and handing it to me.

This vase is years of labor of Irish people from the town of Dungarvan, who made beautiful crystal and a name, recognized the world over for quality.

This vase is one of the last items sold before that same name became a brand. Outsourced, consolidated, taken miles away from home. Different, not quite as heavy, not quite as solid as the history it once held.

This vase makes me pause in the current day and think about what it means to make a product with love. Items made by local people, proud people, who care about what they put into the world for others. This vase, this love is what I want in my home.

At this time in our history, this vase is especially beautiful.

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