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An Unseen Beauty

Author: Australian Opal Direct
by Australian Opal Direct
Posted: Dec 22, 2021

As a kid, I used to love collecting stones. Stories of lost opal gold ring, buried opal jewelry, and priceless rubies aroused my appetite for stones. Of course, the pebbles I collected were just beautiful stones, smoothed by distant currents, ending up in my dirty pockets.As a teenager, I once visited the Natural History Museum in New York and was fascinated by gem collections.The world's largest crystal ball, a replica of the Hope Opal Diamond Ring and an opal weighing over a hundred pounds all entered my dream. A few years later I would choose geology as my college major. In my twenties, while looking at accessories in a government surplus store, I saw a three hundred watt ultraviolet spotlight with its high voltage transformer.Spending just five dollars, it prompted me to ask the owner what it might be used for. He told me that it was used to detect defects in the manufacture of weapons, but other than that, he could think of only one other use to create visible specific fluorescent materials. I immediately thought of mineral fluorite which glows in ultraviolet light. So I bought it.

Created a beautiful book on fluorescent minerals with gorgeous pictures of bright mineral samples in pure rainbow colors under a UV lamp. Most of these rare minerals occurred in mines around the world, but one source of these collectible rocks was only twenty miles from my home! The next day, on my way to Franklin, New Jersey, I was glad to meet him. Seeing a sign near this small town in the Franklin Museum ad for Fluorescent Rocks, I stopped to get directions.I was taken to a large Victorian house, and an old man at the door greeted me. In his living room were several glass cases filled to the brim with gray-looking dusty rocks, each of which was carefully labeled. The collector explained that the colors look very pale during the day but if I want to see the full effect, I welcome to see the collection in his cellar. A large, covered with the same gray stone shelf as the upper floor,I was still not impressed. He then turned on the ultraviolet tube and turned off the regular white light. A fantasy of color strikes my eye. Every tone of orange, from peach to tangerine, screams in rich yellow, azure blues, and lacy patterns from the intense red walls. I crawled as soon as I tested each sample, the owner explained where each sample came from, how much it cost and how rare it was.My head was spinning with the colorful pictures published in the invisible ultraviolet light. I asked him if it was possible to get some samples for my own collection. He told me about the many ore tailings of the ancient mines in the vicinity which undoubtedly have many good specimens to collect, but were very difficult to distinguish from the mass of useless stone.Immediately I thought about my powerful UV spotlight and how it allows me to easily discover valuable specimens. The next weekend, I set up the spotlight near the old mine and, as luck would have it, a small, secluded hut was located away from the tailings. An old man came out and I told him about my search. He realized then and suggested using his electricity to plug in my fifty foot extension cord.He recommended that I wait until it was dark. The next night, I returned to the scene with the waiting Happy Samaritan. As the spotlight warmed up, a buzz filled the air. Then, as the invisible spotlight flashed on the gray rocky mountain, innumerable lights shone like distant galaxies in the emptiness of space. Climbing up the steep slope, I chose the brightest and most colorful pattern until I had more to carry. Like the hidden talents of ordinary people, my collection has failed to impress our science-prone viewers with the amazing and wonderful light emanating from the flat, gray, ordinary-looking stone.

About the Author

Marry Anderson has worked in online marketing since 2011, specializing in event marketing, content management, organic and paid social media, community and reputation management.

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Author: Australian Opal Direct

Australian Opal Direct

Member since: Sep 15, 2021
Published articles: 20

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