On the afternoon of Sunday, July 29, Nasir Abbas, more commonly known as Jeffery the Jeweler, left his table at the corner of Main and Higgins to grab coffee with a friend at Liquid Planet.
“It’s not responsible,” he said about leaving his wares unguarded. It’s something he did without much thought because he’s a trusting person. This time his trust went unrewarded
“It’s the first time that’s happened in four years since I’ve been here,” Jeffery said Monday afternoon while manning his post outside The Dark Room. “I am a person who knows everyone, and no one ever steals.”
While Jeffery was away, someone–– Jeffery suspects a transient––made off with a sack containing 80 to 100 pairs of earrings and some miscellaneous personalpossessions.
The stolen items were of little monetary value, Jeffery says. But that value is negotiable, since he’s never been known for his strict pricing structure.
“You know, with the earrings, people pay me $2 and I give them to them. Or they pay me $5 or $10 and that’s okay too.”
This is the second time in as many months that someone has stolen Jeffery’s stuff.
In June he was hitchhiking from Missoula to Chicago to see his cousin, selling jewelry and seeing friends along the way. Eventually he made his way to Sheridan, Wyo., where he got a ride from a friend of a friend.
“He told me it was his nephew.”
In the “nephew’s” car Jeffery forgot a bag of lapis jewelry that, unlike the bag of earrings, was worth thousands of dollars, he says.
“I went back to the first guy and I said, ‘where is the bag?’ And he said to me, ‘No, I don’t know that guy. I’ve never seen that bag.’”
In neither case did Jeffery file a police report, because, he says, it would be needless trouble.
“It can be upsetting that people steal from you,” he says. “But I am here, out in the sun with my friends…It’s a good life,” he adds with a smile.