Thursday, April 2, 2009

Shop local . . . . .

Here is the scenario: someone mentions to me in some serious tones that it "sure would be nice to shop for stones at the Big Gem Show next year". If you buy beads, gemstones and cabs, you know which Big Gem Show someone's talking about and I think to myself, "Yeah, that would be nice. Get some really gorgeous stuff. Spend some serious bucks." When all is said and done, I'd be out the cost of transportation, accommodations, car rental, food, my valuable time - all before I even set foot in Big Gem Show. Lordy.

The very next day: I go to the local Gem and Mineral Club's annual show. I find everything I want, more than I need, some super deals, even more gorgeous stones, chat with a few locals, run into some friends that I had not seen in months, bought from my incredibly talented friends and neighbors - all in my own backyard. It dawns on me - I can get the best deals from people right here in my own playground! I sleep in my own bed that night, eat my own food, drive my car to and from the show, and my uber-cool, relatively inexpensive finds are waiting for me on my bench. Bonus.

At the local shows, I can get absolutely the best bargains and the sweetest deals on everything I am looking for. No hotel. No car rental. No flying halfway across the US to pay cubic dollars for something I could find right here. True, there is some intrigue and adventure in traveling great distances and finding those great finds but at what cost? And can I build in and recoup those costs in the price of my work? hmmmm

You know, when I weigh the option of staying home and shopping local, who benefits? The short answer - my customer.

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