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Friday, September 25, 2020
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Like birds singing after a storm, engagements and weddings are beginning again, after coming to an almost screeching halt when the novel coronavirus hit.

Jay Scharf, a diamond specialist, who has been working out of his Teaneck home, said he is getting busy now, making rings for smachot and milestones including anniversaries and big birthdays.

“When this whole thing started, nothing was going on,” Scharf said. “Now, every aspect of life is slowly coming back, and everyone is getting back at their own speed.”

The jewelers he works with are just starting to return to work. Until recently, the lockdown prevented Scharf from getting into his New York office, where he had many orders in his safe.

These days, the process of selecting a diamond is a little different than it used to be. Backyards have turned out to be great locations for socially distant viewings. That’s how Scharf helped his client Moshe choose a ring. Moshe explained in a phone interview that he had been dating a girl for several months and things were getting serious. They had discussed rings, so he knew what she wanted, but when the virus hit, his mother asked him to wait to propose until things calmed down.

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Meanwhile, he moved ahead with getting the ring. He contacted Scharf and told him what he was looking for. Masked and gloved, Scharf brought a few selections to Moshe’s backyard. He put them on the table and backed away while Moshe viewed the glittering jewels.

After narrowing down the choices, Moshe FaceTimed his girlfriend, who made the final decision. Scharf had the ring sized and brought it back the same day. Like many kallahs, Moshe’s girlfriend knew the proposal was coming—after all, she chose the ring—but she didn’t know when. One day, when the parks reopened, they went for a walk. He asked. She said yes. They had an engagement party via Zoom.

“The wedding will be in mid-June or July,” he said. “It will be small, but that makes it more beautiful in a certain way.”

The speed at which life suddenly became fraught with danger has given some couples a sense of urgency. Scharf made a ring for a couple who had gotten engaged before the lockdown, and who had sent out a “save the date” announcement. They thought about rescheduling when the restrictions about group events were put into place, but decided to go ahead with a small, backyard ceremony last Sunday. Only family attended in person; all the other guests were on Zoom.

“They realized that life is fragile, and if you can have a simcha, you shouldn’t push it off,” Scharf said. He is making a ring for someone who just decided to get engaged to his long-time girlfriend. “He told me, ‘I shouldn’t be waiting; If you have something good in your life, make it happen right away. There are no guarantees.’”

For more information, or to arrange a backyard meeting, visit Jay Scharf at (http://www.jscharfjewelers.com) or call 917-576-4924.

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