David Aft has been a helpful, generous friend since 2001 when we first worked together at a nonprofit organization in Northwest Georgia. We've always had chemistry and rapport, especially evident in our social and political views and opinions.
Go back in time with me to the week after I told David about my idea to collect and publish stories about keepsakes. He stood in front of my desk and read his keepsake story aloud to me as if he was delivering a soliloquy from Hamlet. He wrote a story about an heirloom—his grandfather's signet ring. He keeps it safely stowed in a safe deposit box, but he showed it to me on the day he read me his story.
But writing and giving me his story was just the beginning. He was determined to help me achieve my dream of publishing a book of keepsake stories, and so he twisted the arms of many family members and friends and somehow convinced others to contribute stories to my collection, too. I’m not sure how he shook them down, but he did. I got beautifully-crafted stories from his parents. From Tom Durkan. From Joanne and Marvin Lewis. And from his wife, Pauline, who wrote a haunting, retrospective story about a pill box hat. I will feature excerpts from all of these stories in the future, but today, I give you an excerpt from David Aft’s story, “The Signet Ring.”
But there's more to the story. David and Pauline recently opened Dave & Pauli’s Art Emporium (www.daveandpaulis.com), a working artist’s studio and art gallery specializing in creative works by local and regional artists in downtown Dalton. It’s open on Wednesdays, Saturdays, and Sundays.
Just a few days before opening the doors, they toured me through the gallery as if I was the Queen of England. The gallery explodes with bold, vibrant colors and interesting works, almost as if it is a living, breathing being pulsing with creativity. Upstairs, they've created an intimate music lounge like none other in Northwest Georgia. I was captivated—simply captivated!
And then I saw something familiar on their counter—something blue. I was speechless. I've had such a hard time getting the big book stores to carry Project Keepsake, but my friends jumped in and saved me. Dave & Pauli’s is the only place in Dalton offering Project Keepsake.
Thank you David, and thank you Pauline. You are great friends—real keepers—and I wish you every success with Dave & Pauli’s Art Emporium and in the other endeavors that fill your life from this day forward.
Project Keepsake is on sale right now! FREE shipping and handling! Great gift item, especially for the holidays. Buy it right here right now, and I'll throw in a free bookmark.