The name of the shop is Harout & Rosa Ardzivian, opened by Harout in 1975. For the last 15 of the shop’s 33 years, Rosa and Harout were married and worked together, but Harout died on July 4 of this year, so Rosa now works alone. She’s going to keep the shop open for a year before deciding what to do next.
Talking to Rosa today put a few things into perspective. For instance, someday soon I’ll post a blog entry about wedding dress regret. When I woke up one morning a few weeks ago, all my wedding day memories were overshadowed by my wrong choice of bustier. Today, the only thing that matters about February 23, 2008 is that it’s the day Mr. Campbell and I married.
Listening to Rosa tell me what a good man Harout was, I saw myself at the beginning of the journey that she has just ended. Rosa was 42 when she married Harout, just like I was in February. “I feel like I have lost something . . . important,” Rosa said in her stilted Armenian accent. I recognized a small part of her grief. Sometimes when I’m on the computer while Mr. Campbell is working in the next room, I’ll realize how happy we are together and how heartbroken I will be if something happens to him. Yet there’s nothing I would change about the present to avoid such heartbreak, and I know that Rosa would not trade her 15 years with Harout for a different past.