Treasures of the Past

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The big thing with my mother's family in Oklahoma when I was a kid was buying and selling old bottles at flea markets. One of my uncles convinced me that I could probably find better bargains in the northeast where we lived, and ship them to Oklahoma where he'd sell them for a profit. At about twelve years old, it was my first adventure as an entrepreneur. Except I couldn't drive yet, so I talked my mom into roaming around rural areas of New York and New Jersey looking for bottles in antique shops. So we hunted for bottles and celebrated finding our treasures with a Dairy Queen chocolate milkshake.


At the end of the summer, I carefully packaged my bottles and shipped them to Oklahoma. Well, one year turned into the next while waiting for my windfall. In fact, it was about ten years later that I was passing through Oklahoma and making a quick stop to see the relatives – and the box of bottles was still there, more or less exactly as I had mailed them. And they're still gracing a corner of our downstairs bookshelf more than 50 years after I purchased them.