29 May 2006

Wrap it up

A few weeks ago, I bought a small piece of remnant fabric that cost the equivalent of about $10. While I was paying for it, the saleslady took my scrap of fabric, folded it neatly, slipped it in a brightly colored wrapping-paper sleeve, and tucked it in a coordinating paper bag. I left with something that looked like a special gift instead of a little piece of fabric. Apparently, that's how it always is with this fabric store- anything you buy is wrapped in gift paper and nestled in a matching bag.

When you go to any other store, there's always wrapping paper, or they'll do it for you. Many larger stores will have a wrapping stand with large rolls of gift paper, ribbon to coordinate, tape, and scissors to curl the ends of the ribbons. The patterns are always changing, but there's usually something that's good for gifts to Grandma, with pink flowers and gold or something, and another more mod design. At the mall near where I work, there's a central gift-wrapping station with even more choices, always seasonally appropriate, always free. It's almost pointless to buy gift paper here, since you're always a few steps away from all the wrapping supplies you need. Even at the liquor store, there's crinkly plastic and huge rolls of ribbons, complete with tools to curl and strip them into a festive frenzy.

Of course, you ARE paying for it, since that book of photos you're eyeing is about $45, and as everyone here knows, liquor is ridiculously overpriced. Still it's hard to resist the temptation of adding a fat bow to that bottle of port before bringing it to the housewarming party. J and I are getting very good at curling ribbons now.

Ship sighting: A busy weekend of boat activity, plus, a Saturday storm that came from the right direction finally washed the crow-smear off the window. On Friday J and I saw the cruise ship Mona Lisa departing as we ate dinner, then several cargo ships arrived, and yesterday a boat that looked very much like a Steamship Authority ferry en route to Martha's Vineyard that had gone quite astray.

In other news, this trawler was on TV and in the newspapers over the weekend after a fire broke out on board while the ship was 75 nautical miles out at sea. Other boats in the area came to help, then a rescue helicopter that flew six of the other men on board to the hospital here in Reykjavík. Two of the fishermen died as a result of the smoke. As fascinated as I am by the sea, the thought of being out in the middle of the ocean when disaster strikes is incredibly frightening to me. I see why fishermen get paid so much here- when emergencies happen, help may come faster now thanks to better technology, but that boat is still so very alone for the crisis period.

1 comment:

tsduff said...

Sailors have my utmost admiration for going out on the sea. I prefer to enjoy the ocean from the shore - and I do love it. But not from a boat.