Beware of practising your piety before people... or of posting pictures of your charitable giving!
By the wonders of advance posting, this is written on Saturday to appear on Monday.
This is my gift bag for Refuweegee... I bought a ladies' back-pack handbag thing and started to fill it with the requisite items... and soon it was overflowing. So I bought a sponge bag into which I placed the toiletries. Then to keep it all together, I placed the two into a sturdy 'bag for life' except that said "Team GB" and was decked out in lions, so that wouldn't really do, and I popped the whole thing into a jolly Christmas gift bag!!
The shopping for the items I needed proved quite challenging...
What kind of book so you buy for someone for whom English might be their umpteenth language? I found a beautiful photographic book about Glasgow.
What might signify 'Scotland'? A teddy bear with a saltire tee-shirt and a mug depicting landmarks in Glasgow.
What sort of notebook would be a nice gift? Which brand of shower gel? What foodstuffs would be enjoyed rather than confusing? And so on...
I spent almost seven hours trekking round shops today - at least three times as much as I would normally do - and in the end I filled my gift bag more or less to my satisfaction.
I had fun, and I hope the person (female age 14+) who receives it enjoys opening it and using its contents.
Buying gifts for a stranger.... I suppose that's a bit like the Magi who travel the weeks of Advent along the window cills of 'high' churches bearing exotic and seemignly inappropriate gifts for a child. Suppose instead that Refuegypt had existed and drawn up a list, I wonder what might have featured on that!
Choosing and wrapping presents... very much part of Advent as it's lived. And I will be travelling one of my 1000 mile-ish day trips when this goes live, taking the gifts I chose for my mother and hoping that she, too, will enjoy some surprises as well as some practical things.
Enjoy your own choosing and wrapping, whatever form it takes.