All one can hear in the small jeweler “Tanya’s Joias” located at the edge of the main shopping street in Câmara de Lobos is the eagerly ticking clock. Yet neither me nor José seems to be the least disturbed by this noise. We do not look up and simply let time freeze as we crouch over his counter and fumble with the gold coated necklace. The fumble slowly turns into a struggle and then a battlefield when the knotted necklace will not give way to José’s large yet skilled fingers.
I start to feel slightly guilty about barging in the shop, asking for a necklace reparation, and then having goldsmith José unknotting my necklace first. But what surprises me even more than José’s kindness is his immense patience. He radiates a calmness which fills me up with the sensation that I have all the time in the world today. Now I can see his point when José shares that he has always preferred the peace and quiet of Câmara de Lobos above the busy city Funchal. The slow life surely breaths a type of happiness.
Finally – half an hour has passed, which I only realized later when the time had melted and started moving again – the knots release and José smiles when I put on my necklace. I promise him to return for a coffee some other day and leave “Tanya’s Joias” twice as cheerful as I came in. Today I might have encountered what I was looking for at Madeira: the feeling of time, and the realization that we have enough of it. Because we do.