Making Merry

Published on: December 19, 2015

I knew it had to be here. Somewhere. I just didn't know where. Or why I even cared.

Because it's one thing to be neighbourly. But tumbling through closets and diving in and out of drawers was becoming something so much more.

Wrapping paper was what he asked for, calling out over the wall, neighbour to neighbour for a simple favour.

And I knew it had to be here. Somewhere.

Between Christmases and birthdays, baby showers and weddings, there were rolls and carefully folded squares, bows, ribbons and tags, a mini Hallmark in my home.

Because I care about these things: selecting papers to suit personalities, painstakingly creasing and taping to perfection, topped with a flourish of ribbon and a stylishly scripted note. Whether you're the type to tear wildly in with glee or patiently and lovingly unstick each sticky square of tape, preserving the shiny sheets that embrace my humble offering, I care about these things.

So when he asked, I wanted to deliver. I could hear him calling from outside, begging me not to bother if it was a hassle, but I forged on to...


In an obtuse kitchen cupboard, high up and narrow, poorly suited for anything except my glittery treats, I found my treasure trove of gift giving.

For the consummate Trini male, draped carelessly over my wall, I chose a roll of alternating glossy and matte pinstripes, a brightly generic abstract sheet and a timeless, ever appropriate foil. Surely one of these would work!

With pride, I strolled outside, preparing to offer the matching bows and ribbons as well and stake my claim as his paper doll.

Fah-mih-lay, he dragged it out with exaggerated ease and a knowing smile, is rolling paper I wanted, yuh zeet?

No. Apparently, I didn't.


Writer: Nicole Martin
Writer based in Trinidad and Tobago.

Illustration: Clayton Rhule



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