He rummaged through the thrift store box of old, grimy watches. Most were “fossils” and could barely be counted as timepieces.
But as he got to the bottom, something caught his eye – simple black and silver. He then saw the brand name and nearly collapsed. He gripped it tight and headed for the cashier.
Zach Norris of Phoenix Arizona hadn’t really cared much about watches before.
He remembered passing by every accessories counter without a second glance. But when he inherited an Omega Seamaster, it was like a spark going off in his brain. The old luxury timepiece was a coveted collector’s item. He felt the itch to know more.
After that, he joined online groups and spent whatever free time he could hunting down yard sales or estate auctions.
He once found another Seamaster for dirt cheap in a local Goodwill. He knew it was worth more than the $40 tag, but he decided to get it after lunch – which was a big mistake.
When he came back, the adrenaline that had seen him through the last couple of hours disappeared.
His heart sank when he saw the empty space where the watch had been. The collector’s business is very competitive and the watch had been snatched up. Lesson learned. However, his biggest find came when he least expected…
Zach walked through the next thrift store on his list – the goal was a used golf cart. It went relatively fast (either they had one or not).
It was another dead end and he nearly left. But a box of watches caught his eye and he gave it a gentle shake to see what was inside.
The letters “Le C” caught his eye, then he saw the rest of the name … LeCoultre. It was one of the rare “Deep Sea Alarm” versions.
Not only were they special, but they were also made in a limited edition. To a collector, this was one of the holy grails. The price? 5 measly dollars. But the actual worth?
Zach leaped in his car and sped home.
He jumped on his computer and immediately went to the message boards. His heart beat faster as offers to buy came in only seconds after he posted. The members were ravenous and the offers got higher. There was one small problem.
He couldn’t shake the deep, grinding feeling of inner conflict.
On one hand, the money would be life-changing. On the other hand, part of him desperately wanted to keep it. It was one of the first watches made that had an alarm for deep-sea divers. Another message popped up. Zach recognized the name and his mouth hung open.
His name was Eric Ku and he was a famous Rolex dealer.
Eric was not only a revered, fellow collector but he was also one of Zach’s personal idols within this part of the hobby world. It became a very easy deal to accept … as long as Eric agreed to Zach’s unique conditions.
Aside from the purchase price, Zach wanted an Omega Speedmaster Professional (valued in the thousands).
He also wanted Eric to fly out and deliver it in person so he could meet one of his heroes. It was a done deal and he flew out to San Francisco. So, how much was the watch worth?
On top of the gifted watch, Zach received $36,000!
The two also became fast friends and decided to spend the day together eating and chatting at a local lobster restaurant. It was one of the best days of Zach’s life. There was one more interesting thing about the buyer …
He already had another Deep Sea Alarm.
Eric let out a huge breath of awe when he found out. It turns out the DSA that Eric had was actually in such amazing condition that it was nearly “too perfect”, and, as a result, he was nervous wearing it out in public. Eric grinned and asked an obvious question…
“So, what are you going to spend the money on?”
Zach leaned back and bellowed a laugh. Fair, okay that was fair. “Well, I’m getting married soon. I want to use some to make the day extra special.” “That’s a lot for a wedding?” Zach gave a shy grin. “Well, there is one more thing.”
He wanted to buy yet another luxury watch – another investment into his hobby.
Each discovery made the itch stronger, and after this, he wasn’t going to stop anytime soon. The rest would be small improvements to the quality of life for him and his fiancé. The money couldn’t have come at a better time.
When he got back from his trip, the message boards were still abuzz with the news. People had inundated him with questions.
He typed a few answers out, shut the computer down, and went to make some popcorn with his fiance for movie night and talk about what to buy for the wedding.