“Gifts from Abroad”


Although I have no desire to travel overseas, some of my friends do. Yesterday dear friends came over to share the mincemeat pie I mentioned a few posts ago. They had just returned from Israel and brought back as a gift the lovely blue and yellow scarf pictured above. As soon as I saw it I knew it would look perfect atop the dining room sideboard below our blue and yellow wallpaper. It looks as if I was made for just that spot.

I treasure friends who now me well enough to gift me with just the right things. Giving takes certain skills, most especially the ability to know not what I would like, but what would suit the other person. Near my home there are several “gift shops” which seem to fill a niche for people who want or need to give someone a present but have no idea what that might be. While I have poked around in them occasionally, I have rarely found anything that would suit any friend. I imagine that many of the items end up in closets.

I love running across things in the course of my life. Sometimes I see something, most usually a book of course, that I know would be a perfect gift. Then I have to practice the aforementioned skill. Who am I  really thinking about, me or my friend? If it is me, I buy it for myself. If for my friend I enjoy knowing the pleasure sure to come.

I hope that, as often a possible, we can gift from the heart rather than from obligation.  Despite all the advertising, there really are no “everyone wants one” presents. Don’t be suckered into buying one of those “as seen on TV.” Except maybe those copper bracelets to heal arthritis! Hint. Hint. (Just kidding.)



29 thoughts on ““Gifts from Abroad”

  1. I have brought back so many gifts from foreign countries, and I only know what happened to a few of them. The things I gave my mother from Belgium, Greece, Russia, Turkey, Holland, China, and Singapore all managed to survive, and now I have them. I brought my friend’s little girl a leather camel from Egypt, and she kept it for fifteen years, until she went to University. Now she doesn’t remember what happened to it. (I expect the leather perished)
    Best wishes, Pete.


  2. I know exactly what you mean – and of course at this time of year we are encouraged to buy complete tat which probably does end up in the bin. Trying to find the right present for the right person takes thought. The scarf is, as you say, perfect – it could have been made for that spot.

    I’m curious as to why you don’t want to travel. Another blogpost topic perhaps?


  3. I used to buy Christmas presents through the year when I found something I thought someone would like. Too often…
    – I found by December, I couldn’t remember where I’d put them,
    – I ended up with too many gifts for one or two people and nothing for others (do you have one of those relations for whom you can never find anything suitable?)
    – they’d bought one themselves by the time it was Christmas or the gift had become unsuitable for some other reason.
    Now, I only buy Christmas presents for the children of the family, but I still collect things through the year for a treasure hunt (originally devised for my children so the adults could enjoy their cheese board and coffee in relative peace – pun not intended). More lately it’s been some other kind of Alladin’s Cave where clues or a lucky dip decide who goes first and they pick what they want. Anything left after the ‘hunt’ is used as prizes for card or board games later.


  4. I try to look for special presents for people, Elizabeth, and actually make a lot of mine. I give at least four people homemade Christmas cakes as I know they like these. I also make homemade chocolate Christmas wreaths. I find children harder to buy presents for as they all have everything already.


  5. I agree that it looks made for the spot! I generally don’t ask for gifts. If I really want something, I get it for myself and then everyone is free to get me whatever they want. 😅 That way, I’m never disappointed.


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