For your weekly Audience, pray silence for The Proprietor...
Greetings Cigar Enthusiasts!
What a fabulous week of activity in our community. Hundreds of reviews and masses of new members all carefully listing their cigar collections to encourage the phenomena we now know of as cigar-keeping.
What a wonderful way to display our tastes and passions, through our keeps on this site.
Lord Duveen the famous 20th century art dealer realised that when he sold a great collection of paintings to an American industrialist he wasn't selling pictures - but immortality!
Collecting cigars is even more than that because the whole process is so delightfully frustrating. The real pleasure lies in the steady accumulation of exactly the right cigars, at hopefully precisely the right price and the patience required is immense.
The late-night online search, the scouring of the duty-free shop or a dashed visit to a small cigar merchant on the way back from a holiday. The sheer joy of discovery, almost trying to keep the smile from the face, since showing too much enthusiasm might make the vendor retract permission to buy.
There is no doubt that you have to build relationships with your suppliers, they are all-powerful now and I adopt an expression of deep humility each time I enter their stores. Then there is the general and over-riding fear of losing out on a new limited edition or regional vitola. Cigar collecting breeds terrible FOMO.
But the sweet bliss felt, when all the planets align. The scuttle home with the bag swinging in your hand or packet tucked into your pocket. The unique and delightful sensation of the un-boxing; feeling for the join with your thumb, the fiddling with the seals and the slicing of the wrappers. Followed by the slow visual absorption of the contents and the decidedly Gollum-like pawing of the dark brown sticks in the slide-lid box. The inspecting of the dates and codes like an Egyptologist in Tutankhamun's tomb and finally pressing the nose deep into the bundle and inhaling the extraordinary scents of pencil shavings and dark chocolate, of a wheel of tightly-ribboned double coronas.
The final stage of this magnificent ritual involves either secreting away the whole package in a large humidor as you would a kitten into a basket, with great care and delight; or even better taking them from the packet one by one and laying them snug alongside their new cousins, making sure the bands are all aligned like soldiers on Horse Guards parade.
Later on, whilst updating your page on cigar-keep.com, a sense of relief and contentment is spread through the soul. You can relax. The collection is that one tiny bit closer to perfection.
However, the feeling is short lived and soon the hunt begins again - this is after all a life-time of work.
Is there anything else which enervates the corpuscles, as finding, buying and storing away a rare box of Cuban Cigars?
In any event the more people join the site the more we can share in this phenomena. Once we launch our ‘Stick-Exchange’ the heart in throat hunt will be made simpler - even if it will remain as exciting. We are adding new features daily and please let us know what further improvements we can make.
Have a fabulous weekend, please enjoy your cigars responsibly and I hope to see you on our zoom meet on Sunday.