If the watch fits

Whats in a watch?

 Well for the aspirational who gobble up Patek Phillipe ads  like sparrows their bird seed an awful lot. The idea that by wearing one they will join the old rich who worry not about such things but are forever teaching their  boy reef knots on the family yacht, how to scull on the tailor made racing shell, giving a few words of advice before they mount the  first class only Orient Express,and of course having a laugh as man and boy play at being  cooks together.

So it came as little surprise to find that one of the many wonderful scenes in the unfolding Turkish corruption scandal(USA’s staunchest  ally undermines its sanctions against USA’s most dedicated enemy Iran?) involves a $395000 Patek Phillipe*.

So expensive was this  time piece that a special watch mule had to be sent from Istanbul to Geneva to pick it up. Remember you never actually own a PP you just look after it for the next generation.  Whether ex finance minister Zafar Cagalyn will wear his watch as he counts the years in a slammer or just the hours to the next meal  at his Monte Carlo hotel remains to be seen. Of course small kebab   when we find that old Zafar(so good) has already trousered $50m in bribes in the $120bn gold for oil scam.

My favourite all time  film is Pulp Fiction .No scene is more memorable  than when Christopher Walken explains to the young Bruce Willis about how his father carried his watch  where the  sun doesn’t shine for several years in Vietcong captivity. This watch worn by your grandfather  in the Pacific war before “is your birthright”. For seven years it was carried cheek to cheek  so that this timepiece which neither father or  grandfather never owned but were just looking after for the next generation could be passed on. It had to be a Patek Phillipe.

Even I have a watch story. On finding out who my biological father was fourteen years ago I went to meet my half brother and sister in Canada. As a bond between us they gave me  my natural father’s watch. The watch(Eterna Matic 2002) he earned working for thirty years as a VP at Alcan. As some one who never lasted more than three years in any full time job I knew what this watch might have cost. Up until then I had never worn  watch.

For three years I wore this watch. It climbed Kilimanjaro with me, in the Himalayas I dropped it and one of the porters  found it. Then it went wrong. I took it into the wonderful local  Putney clock shop. Two weeks later and £150 poorer  I got it back. Six months later it broke down again. Not even a PP gets a second chance. I  have been wearing  a£50 Royal for the last three years. No problem. One thing I know is that my son will never wear it.

*On line the same watch can be bought for $319000. Did the courier pocket the difference, does this story never end.


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One Response to If the watch fits

  1. Happy New Year! No, I don’t think the story ever ends; that is why I am wary of HMG and it’s foreign aid budget, where it’s spent, the control over it, and the true returns on that ‘investment’.

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