"A wise lover values not so much the gift of the lover as the love of the giver."Thomas á Kempis
I probably should have written this earlier, but I was totally stricken this entire week by a haze of obsessive-compulsion to read, read and then read some more. It has happened before, and I usually fall under this brand of madness several times a year, but this particular episode has been especially strong. Never before have I managed 10 books within the span of just 3 days. In fact, I just got back from a bookshop at the mall, having spent 4 whole hours standing in front of a shelf - ignoring the exquisite aches I have acquired in my neck, back and legs - just to finish a book I can ill-afford to purchase this month. Anyway, 5 of the books I've just read belong to a young adult series I've just discovered (a completed one, by the way) and I have a good mind to review them in a post later. We shall see.
On the eve of my birthday this year (id est, last week), I went to the post office to retrieve a package in my name. This is that package,
The postal worker came calling on Saturday but I was asleep, and the doorbell have not been working for 20-odd years now.
The package came from KL, from Phoebe's Mom. Phoebe left it in her possession before she (Phoebs) left for India in March, so she (Phoebs' Mom) could mail it to me right before my birthday. Somehow, it's important to Phoebe that I should only receive it in the vicinity of the 14th of July instead getting it on a much earlier or later date of convenience. She could have waited till August, when she returns to pass it to me in person and save on postage. She could have just given it to me back in March even seeing that I am not someone who would consider the numbers of any calendar date to be of any special significance. I treat every holiday like how children treat Opposite Day. It can be on any damn day of the year I wish it to be. Sames goes for my birthday.
Which is probably why Phoebe insists on making sure I receive the package on my actual birthday - it's her way of saying, 'that's nice, dear, but I don't care for your crazy ideas on how the world should work at all'.
"Is it a shirt?" I asked her, before I went to collect it.
"No, it's not. You'll know when you get it. It's a surprise," she said.
"Is it... a book?"
"No, and stop asking because I shan't tell you!"
I went on making another 200 guesses until she finally gave up and admitted in exasperation that my very first guess was correct after all - it WAS a shirt. It's my way of saying, "I annoy you because I CAN!"
And it was a shirt that I really wanted, a black formal. Technically, I already own a black shirt, one I purchased in quite a hurry for my college ball (a couple of hours before the ball, in fact), but that's the problem, see. I was in so much of a rush that I have neglected to take a good look at it when I tried it out. You can pretty much imagine my horror when I discover later that there are flowery prints all over it, visible only when light falls on them at a certain angle. Phoebe's gift is perfect.
Along with the package, Phoebs also sent a card, one of her trademark handmades,
It actually came with a detachable party hat and a little blowout! I'd show you the inside of the card, but it's private :)
Anyway, Phoebe is coming back real soon and with luck, she might come down to Malacca for a weekend - and her birthday is flying in quick. Any suggestions on what I should get her? I'm not much of a gift-chooser so I can really use a bit of help (particularly since Phoebe made it quite clear to me that if I give her another book, she'll make me eat it - not in those words, of course, but... yeah). Phoebs' college internet connection is so crappy that she have practically given up trying to come online so she'll probably never read this. Gimme ideas now!
In the meantime, I have to go crash-land on a pillow somewhere. I slept only 10 hours in the past 3 days thanks to my little transient spell of book madness and I'm not sure if I can feel my face anymore.
For what must the nth time I've said this now; I'm just darn glad Phoebe's my girl.
k0k s3n w4i