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The Gift

by on January 12, 2011

It was quite possibly the best thing I had ever seen.  It was perfect as it stood among the trinkets and crafts of the island people and it was perfect as a gift for the man who has everything and wants for nothing.  It was intricately carved with exquisite detail and inlaid with mosaic of glass and stone in all the colours that sparkled in the tropical sunlight.  It was large and made a statement with its bold and daring images.  It would look good in his dull and white house where all the surfaces were smooth and slick, endlessly polished and buffed into an unnatural shine.  This piece was organic and ready to shake that household into life.

I stepped forward to take a closer look and became more convinced that it was what I wanted for him.  Unconsciously determined to buy it even as my mind pretended to think it over – price, size, suitability.  Just motions my mind went through letting me think I was in control.  I wanted it.  I was going to buy it.

However, it was more than I would have liked to pay but really, how often does a gift so perfect just happen across your path?  Not often.  And it was likely, I would be able to bargain the seller down a bit.

I drew breath and asked,

“Do you ship?”

 

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4 Comments
  1. Sweet little slice of life. I really liked the ‘I knew I was going to buy it but my mind was still considering’ vibes – a very honest reflection of our internal processes.

    Also like how much you tell us about the gift receiver – the description of his house tells us a lot about him and how the giver perceives him (he rather reminds me of your Craig from the last story).

    For me it seemed that from early on the narrator had decided to buy it and the only real problem might be the shipping, thus the drawn breathe and key question at the end – but I would have liked this to be made more explicit (i.e. that because of it’s size and/or the narrator’s circumstance there was no other possibility except shipping) to make the end work better.

    Really like the way you can tap into everyone’s internal dialogue – it always amuses me how typically human I am.

    • nantalith permalink

      Thanks.

      I wanted the reader to decide what was to be shipped.

      And yes, I sometimes surprise myself at the typical everyday things I do.

  2. cbraz permalink

    I really enjoyed this. It is a lovely vignette about a typical situation, but you breathe life and magic into it through your descriptions of the gift, the man for whom it is intended (through his house, which is a lovely meta-ness), and the decision-making (or already made!) process. It feels very true to life that sense of having already made up one’s mind and yet wanting to think carefully about it still.

    I liked not having the gift completely described – just some tantalising elements.
    Thanks.

  3. This was enjoyable. My favourite bit in this was the description of the shopping experience of finding something that you really like.

    > And it was likely, I would be able to bargain the seller down a bit.
    I think that the comma shouldn’t be there.

    I did wonder about how well not having a good idea of The Item itself worked. The descriptions that were there, though (some of which reminded me of advertising copy!), were fun, and ultimately I didn’t really feel cheated by not knowing exactly what the item was.

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