Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Tick tock, tick tock --- Boing, boing, boing!


The sound of a grandfather clock as it sounds the chimes on the hour. I'm quite fond of grandfather clocks although they were almost unheard of in my childhood in Australia. I certainly did not know anyone with one and they would have been too large for our modest houses in any event.

Although I have a large house now there still isn't just the right place for one. My friend with Alzheimer's disease had a lovely one which he had had for many years and when the Trust company was selling off his household items I bought the clock for my son who had been intrigued by it since he was a child.

The clock had not been in working order for some time since my friend had neglected its upkeep in his latter difficult years so it was valued at only $500. A clock of that quality would retail today at over $6000 I discovered later, but I simply wanted to find it a good home. I found an old German clockmaker and for another $500 it was restored to perfect working order and every Saturday my son faithfuly winds the clock by pulling on the weights. Sometimes I'll be talking to him on the telephone and hear it chiming in the background. He has it set to chime every fifteen minutes and sound out the hour.

So I couldn't easily have a grandfather clock in real life, but once I set up house in my Canadian log cabin in Second Life, I went shopping for one there. I found quite a few that kept time, Second Life time which fortunately is my time zone, and went tick tock, tick tock and chimed on the hour, boing, boing, boing. Yes the pendulums do swing back and forth. But most of them were of dark wood and often ornate. Not quite the style for a log cabin. On my rounds I happened into a store when the owner, Fuene Nishi was there and we began to discuss her grandfather clocks. She said, I'll make you one to suit. She took me to her workshop and began to build a sample. We discussed the type of wood, I thought cherry might be a nice wood rather than pine which would disappear against the walls of the cabin. Give me a few days, she said and I will send you a message when it is ready.

Sure enough, several days later she sent me an instant message. Your clock is in my shop, go take a look. Well I did and for 480 Linden dollars, or less than 2 US dollars I purchased the clock and hurried back home to install it. Well easier said than done, I'm afraid.


When I was unpacking it, it totally disappeared as is often a problem in Second Life. But no matter where I looked, in and around the cabin, I could not find it. Usually such items are returned to your inventory within a day, but not this time. Very distressed, I sent a message to Fuene who lives in Tokyo. She immediately refunded my money and said come to the store and buy it again. So I dutifully went there, where she met me and after I purchased it again she accompanied me to the cabin where she installed it herself, as you can see above. So now I find its tick tock sound a very comforting one when I spend time there, sitting by the fire, listening to music or reading a book or rearranging the furniture.


Now my clock is a regular feature in her store

Meeting Fuene that day in her store was very fortuitous and the trouble she took, both in making me a custom clock and installing it for me after my initial problem, is an example of the wonderful people one meets in Second Life. Such customer service is rare in real life but this person took genuine pride in giving satisfaction to her customer for she surely did not do it for the money, less than 2 US dollars. Thank you Fuene, it was a pleasure doing business with you.


10 comments:

Dragonstar said...

I love grandfather clocks. I always wanted one. A virtual home might be the way to go!

mutleythedog said...

Its true that in real life very few people would fly from Japan to Canada to install a clock.. great fun!!

Colin Campbell said...

My Grandmother had a carriage clock which had a unique sound. My dad has it now. I would like it some day, but would have to arrange for it to be transported. We had a grandfather clock when I was growing up. My mum took the weights out so it didn't chime and wake us up. She still has it.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Glad you found a good home for your friend's grandfather clock, jmb, and that's a very fine one you have in SL!

CherryPie said...

I love that second life clock. I am very fond of cherry wood :-)

Carver said...

I know your son treasures your friend's clock. What a great gift from you. Second life really cracks me up. I'm afraid to start as I fear it would be addictive.

Dr.John said...

My wife loves grandfather clocks but I am partial to old cuckoo clocks.

Liz said...

I would love a grandfather clock. When we came to view this house there was a grandfather clock in the hall. I was really hoping they might leave it (!!) as the space in the hall looks empty without it! One day ...

Moggs Tigerpaw said...

I must say, having seen it, it is a very nice grandfather clock.

JMB’s cabin is very nice too, a nice home, and it overlooks the ocean from a cliff.

Ian Lidster said...

I have a wonderful Victorian grandfather clock that has been passed down -- eldest son to eldest son -- for four generations. It sits idly in the living room because I cannot find anyone here who knows how to service as classic clock.