Trumpet solo on the beach. Gray morning in Provincetown. Man by himself with a brass trumpet, notes floating, drifting, dreaming out across the bay. They swirl, curl, echo off docks, schooners, masts and sails. We have a new ring called Jazz by the Bay. Open, airy, lacy, melodic, blue sapphire center – set low, close, comfortable, solid, safe, secure. A delight to see sparkling on your hand. Goldilocks perfect size.
This ring is the beach, sand dunes, shore birds flying fast and low. This is schools of fish, seals, and sharks. This is the sea. This is blue, brilliant blue. This is sparkly light on the water and waves tumbling into froth and foam. This is mystery, human mystery. It is passion, passion found. This is a performance by the bay. This is a concert of one, blue notes played pure, long, low. It is a ring of discovery, deep, profound discovery – to be with you today and forever.
Provincetown, Cape Cod, Early Morning
I was 22. I had a solid job in Portland at my grandfather’s jewelry store. I had a great second floor apartment with a screened-in porch, and western views of the setting sun over city rooftops. I had a small, tight, white sporty car. This was my second summer at this place. I was 22 and I felt the angst of my predictable, reliable, safe life.
One summer morning, I got up with the sun and drove to Cape Cod. I drove non-stop with no specific destination in mind…I raced down highways, down, out, and up onto the Cape until I saw a turn-out for Marconi Beach. I stopped at a big parking lot to the smell of gasoline and oil, rubber and tar, the parking lot was full. Nothing that I have written would paint this as remarkable, except that I know there was life before Marconi Beach, and life after, and that life after was never the same.
I got out of the car, shorts, t-shirt, sunglasses. I walked down the three-story staircase to the beach…I walked. I simply walked. I walked in a way I’d never walked before. I was present to the August sun, to the tide and waves. I was present to the hundreds of people: kids, moms and dads, families in the tide pools, families in the waves. I was present to the warmth of the air, the smell of coconut oil, Coppertone. I was present to the way the sun felt on my skin. I was present to the feel of the grainy sand as I walked barefoot. I took in the amber light through sunglasses. I listened to the sounds of kids on the beach. I was present, fully alive, and conscious in a way I had never been before.
On my right, were sand cliffs 60 feet high. On my left, sun reflecting on the sea. I walked slowly, no, really sauntered down the beach. I saw this beach, the sand cliffs, the water, the light through sunglasses, but I also saw it with eyes 10, 20 feet above, and always from the right. I was there, but I was above at the same time, following this consciousness, aware of me and all that was around, yet present as a follower. I was not alone; there were two of us, me and this observer.
The sky, the sea, the beach spoke. The sand cliffs and sand beach beneath me spoke gently. I’ve never forgotten the whispers of life because more than any other time, I knew I was alive. I knew I was really alive.
Marconi Beach, Cape Cod
I spent hours at the beach. I remember little of the evening: I got a room in Provincetown, slept soundly, and in the morning got dressed in jeans, shirt with a collar and buttons, and a sweater. I went out onto the street and could hear a sound down below. I followed the streets to the waterfront. It was cool, the air moist, light fog, sky was gray, tide was low. In the morning mist, at tide’s edge, there was a black man on the lower beach, back to, dressed in white – white shoes, white pants, white shirt, white jacket, with a brass trumpet. He was playing to the morning, playing to the bay, playing to the sky. I watched. I listened. I can still hear the purity of the notes. No one was around, just me, 100 feet back on the high shore, and that consciousness – that awareness – watching 10, 20 feet above recording what I saw, recording what it saw. I still see the whole scene through the eyes of this omniscient hovering consciousness.
In the last 50 years, I’ve gone back to the trumpeter that morning on Marconi Beach in my memory a hundred, a thousand times because there was life before, and then life after. I’ve often asked myself “Would life have turned out differently had I not gone to Cape Cod that weekend?” I am convinced I would have ended up leading an entirely different life. I learned that weekend one of the great secrets of consciousness, that of being deeply, profoundly present.
The ring is simple. I’ve never seen one quite like it before. Open, airy swirls, subtle, solid, safe, and yet light, open, graceful. Why is this ring Jazz by the Bay? I see the trumpeter dressed in white, alone, at one with his brass horn. I see him belting out tunes, blue notes, ghostly notes rising to the clouds, an intimate creation – pure melody streaming up and out across the bay.
As audience of one, I watching him play into the early morning air, blue notes rising, sound touching everything: docks, boats, buildings, touching everyone sleeping inside. I realize now that I was in a deep, profound state of still presence leftover from my walk on the beach the day before.
The ring is a celebration of great moments in life. These are a lot of words for a simple ring. It is, to me, a musical ring. Its melody is sculpted in gold. The notes rise in a “greatest jazz performance of all time”. It’s a celebration-of-life ring with a blue sapphire at its heart. Goldilocks perfect size on the hand. We will adjust finger size.
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