Christmas Creative Nonfiction Fiction

Happy New Year, Easter, Mother's Day, Merry Christmas! It's too fast, too fast! I'm so busy, busy, busy! We had many last minute rush orders to complete this last week and we are almost done, Thank Heavens. So many times I had to borrow time to consciously breath before I could see the walls ! True story!

I will be finishing work normal time this afternoon and plan to do Christmas present shopping! Yes, I could easily try the Net, you know scrolling with my feet up, tasting a chilled glass of wine and television going on in the background. However, there is a surefire curiosity shop near my home I wish to try first, hasn't failed me yet!

The road is busy plus road works. Yuk, they've closed off the right lane! I clearly see the vibrant niche of shops I want to visit, as I turn left frustrated to circle the block once more and park at a greater distance.

Walking- I have my exercise at least. My tired mind just wants to space out, stop overworking with this and that. Floating in imagery, I see the sun hacking at the leaves of trees. So beautiful- a butterfly floats, its wings stationary. Church windows with psychedelic colours. And soft white fur of an excitable white dog patted. Hang on, I realise as the dog jumps and nips at my skirt, I've walked passed the shop! My daydream surprised me, oblivious to jack hammer carving the opposite foot path five minutes ago. I sigh out loud!

I turn around and squared the shop front, "Et view and Isla too." It's a dual shop, well I call it a dual shop! There's only one shop space shared by two different businesses owners. That space serves many eccentric customers, who always seem to find the perfect gift, if your searching for that, of course! My footsteps started on the quick then wandered again. I remembered one day I ask the owner, How do you get it right with your prosperous gift shop? Pleasingly, the old tubby gent, pause and scanned deep set eyes around the room. Satisfied each of his customers were still indulging in the plethora of his happy space not ready to buy yet, he breathed out and smiled. Eager to tell me his secret of successful long term customer, "It's foolproof I always go with my gut feeling and purchase the item which feels right. Even if the object were poodle earrings, a mounted singing fish wall piece, or whatever, the gut..." He patted his belly "...is always right!" I remembered our small small conversation stopped, a customer's charm bracelet tingled whilst picking up a oblong squashed shape tea cup and saucer in bulky glazed clay product. "Oh darling a perfect gift for my friend whose got everything. I can see it on her kitchen window with her other trinkets. She'll love it!" He smiled and directed a raised eye at me.

Like a dream, the tingling of the charm bracelet matched the shop entrance door bell. It's sort of like when one dreams of maybe in a boat or on top of a mountain and suddenly the alarm clock is there under the ice or tarpaulin! The cold air pushed out onto me, as Australia is really hot, especially near Christmas. My mind in limbo a bit dizzy, and displaced like an intruder to a fairy ring. I sort of wandered passed the old gent and through to the other side of the shop. 

A dense glass circular mirror sat above a few sets of square shelves of assorted essential oils and exotic teas. The scent of orange twists, geraniums, spices, and native plants escaping there containers pierced my nose. I touched the wood slate table in front of them, which displayed many homemade crafts, non taking my fancy . Mortar and pestle, she'll have one . Serving plates she'd have too many! Serviette holders nah! The lace tablecloth was way out of my budget, although it was something I could buy for my mother or daughter. Then I pulled my hand away abruptly, latent but abrupt: Covid programming does that these days! I glanced at paintings for sale on the wall; all local artists, yes but really I don't know their taste!

I must have been there for awhile to trigger I might need some assistance. I was approached by Isla. Her chest and shoulders held tight almost buckled were now familiar to me. As usual, she wore a bulky necklace, today's had chunks of emerald and amethyst. Her worn face, thinning hair and dyed scalp was accompanied with a mouth tightened at the corners and laser eye gaze that would make a judge go silent. "Can I help you" A bit embarassed, I fiddled with my bag and excused myself, "I might have lost time and have a bit of heat stroke" Her body softened and she bent towards me. Touching my shoulder she whispered, "There is a chair there, I will get it for you." I vigorously shock my hands at my hip level. "I'm ok ", I squeaked a few times.

"Can I get you a glass of water?" 

"Oh no, thanks" pulling a water tumbler from my handbag with a sheepish smile. My phone poked out too, I noticed it was 4.45pm!

Getting late, no matter how I felt,. I really wanted to get this shopping over with some gifts for a diverse set of people. These people were all extroverts! They had no filters! The wrong gifts would mean suffering blurts of opinions reverberating everywhere. I started, "I need your help", explaining to Isla what I have just explained to you. Wanting some more detail I was asked about my employer? "It's really for my bosses wife. I want to steer away from religious things as I don't want to offend her but she an older woman who to cook! A resin Cheese board and knife set became visible to me on the table. I was surprised it was there! A gold star with red outline pattern and sparkle seemed politically correct. I knew they liked wine a cheese nites. Perfect!

Having the nose of a bloodhound Isla lead me to small garden pots. The pots were cylindrical black plastic, about 10 cm tall and two dollars each. Perfect again! I pulled out my card. I'll have the cheese platter set and ten of those please. I picked out an assortment of herbs, succulents and common householders. 

I like the feel of those recycled cardboard garden carry boxes. The morning air and with a damp box scented with dirt and herbs was so relaxing for our last day of work. I strategically placed the box in the kitchen sink, as everyone needed there coffee first. Each person enquired as they did their morning routine. "What's this? Can I have one? Is this for me? Are we growing a farm here or something? What's plants doing in the sink? I can't refill the urn with these plants here someone???? For the most I would yell from the other room, "Take one, whatever you like and Merry Christmas!" It was nice hearing the happy feet shuffle. I suspected Tim would take a succulent and Annie the Thyme. Patrice wiggled the cactus, like they do on utube, as she walked passed me. Troy needed to know how to care for his plant? Exposure to sunlight? Indoor or outdoor? Watering frequency? etc. Lin took the last plant ornamental, with variegated purple leaves.

I felt good, the garden was a winner. Inspired, I decided I would grow next year's Christmas presents from the start, either seeds or cuttings.

Merry Christmas.

April 24, 2022 06:30

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George Davis
12:25 May 06, 2022

Nice story. Breath should be breathe. The road is busy plus road works. Overuse of the word road. And soft white fur of an excitable white dog patted. Not sure what this is trying to say. I turn around and squared the shop front???? I hope this helps, Rose. I am not being critical. I'm trying to be helpful.


Rose Lind
22:21 May 06, 2022

Ty, yes you are right. I'll fix them soon. It's good to have a written comment


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10:57 May 23, 2022

would you like to read this story in mobile app?


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