I walked into the dimly lit hall and saw a small group of people scattered about speaking in hushed tones of reverence. They didn’t pay attention to me entering. Their gazes were fastened on the glass cases in front of them filled with priceless stones from another time. I was in a treasure room full of rare gems from around the world. The Grainger Hall of Gems holding rare gems is tucked into a corner on the third floor of the Field Museum in Chicago.
The gaudy brilliance of jewels, some the size of a ripe peach, sparkled and shined from glass cases. There were Tiffany & Co. jeweled pieces from the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition. A couple of people briefly averted their eyes from the gems to look at me surprised by the flash of my camera. It’s allowed to take pictures and I wanted photos of the jewels that once belonged to millionaires and royalty.
The cut, clarity and color of the diamonds, amethysts, emeralds, sapphires and other jewels was done by skilled hands to enhance their color and light. There were raw, uncut stones in sizes larger than baseballs.
Which gaudy brilliant bauble did I like the best? I would take any of them, and one ring in particular.
This is my view of gaudy brilliance for Where’s My Backpack Travel theme: Gaudy; a treasure room full of jewels.