I hope you will put on your red coat and red mittens and red muffler and walk to town to your favorite store.
The store you love to go to because it has unexpected things. Things you have yet to discover. Things that inspire you. A store you wander through like a personal museum. Mittens from Finland. Local pottery with leather handles. Fuzzy mauve scarves with big stitches. Cards with berries stuck on them. Packets of juniper seeds.
If you buy me a gift, I want you to feel a rush of discovery in the finding. I want the gift to be something that speaks to how you see me. Something you suspect I’ll be curious about. Something, perhaps, I’ve never considered.
If you buy me a gift, you will not do it from a list that I send you. I will not do that. The list would only be about me. And not the connection between us.
If you buy me a gift, I hope it is a yellow card on which you will write a story and seal it with pink wax.
Or a small paisley box wherein you place a sweet shell you found on the beach in September when I couldn’t join you.
If you buy me a gift, I want you to wrap it in brown paper and tie it with green yarn from the sweater you never quite finished last year.
If you give me a gift, I will treasure it. I will see you in your red coat and red mittens and red muffler. I will think of you in your favorite store perusing your favorite things. I will think of you coming upon the true gift that reminds you of me.
And when I open the brown paper and untie the yarn I will know that you are there. Watching me. I am quieted by your choice of this gift for me. Honored really. I will hold it now and eventually I will put it on my table next to the grey chair where I have my coffee in the mornings.
If you give me a gift.
(This holiday I honor our revered retailers who struggle to keep their doors open for us. Three customers at a time… hand sanitizer and masks at the ready. Thank you.)