Jane here, excited because I never usually win anything in raffles…except recently I did, and isn't it beautiful?
This Bristol Blue glass decanter was one of the raffle prizes at the recent CrimeFest convention in Bristol. The makers, Bristol Blue Glass Ltd., were one of the sponsors of the event, and had provided several handsome prizes and an eye-catching display of their gorgeous glassware – jugs, bowls, candlesticks, you name it. I, like most of those attending I expect, had been admiring and coveting the exhibits all through the weekend. They are all hand-made, in the most wonderful deep blue glass, which apparently comes from using cobalt with lead crystal, a formula invented in the eighteenth century.
The raffle prizes were drawn at the Gala Dinner, and to be honest I wasn’t paying overmuch attention because, as I said, I’m usually unlucky at such things. When I found my luck had changed, I was over the moon. The decanter had to be shipped home for me specially, as I was travelling by train, and couldn’t carry such a large and fairly fragile piece in my over-packed suitcase, so I’ve only just received it. It’s too beautiful for everyday use; it stands in pride of place on a windowsill where it catches the light to perfection, and reminds me of a very happy weekend.
Actually I was on a lucky streak that night at CrimeFest, because I won another prize as well: a bag of books, all the short-listed mysteries for the Last Laugh Award, given for the best humorous mystery of last year. (Ruth Dudley Edwards won it for “Murdering Americans”.) This wonderful mixture has been keeping me turning pages, and laughing, ever since. Incidentally the Gala Dinner took place on Derby Day – if I’d known my luck was running to such an extent, I’d have put a bet on a horse as well!
One thing you can all bet on: I’ll definitely be attending CrimeFest 2009.