Our Christmas this past year was cut a bit short from the beginning, as we had a trip to Innsbruck just before the holidays. Innsbruck was lovely though and I have no complaints on that front. Apart from nearly witnessing a fiery inferno (A car parked on a street next to a chestnut roasting stand begun to leak petrol. Yeah.), we had a lovely time, the Christkindlmarkt was impressive to say the least and I even managed to score some half price hand blown glass ornaments. Sadly we didn’t have a place to hang them in this year, but perhaps next Christmas I’ll have time to figure something out.
I got the Architect a tasting selection of special whiskeys as a gift, along with a generous selection of various novelty ice molds. I specifically went for the big ones and now we have ice cubes which nearly fill his entire whiskey glass on their own. We also have a Titanic-themed ice mold, which rather tickled the morbid side of my fancy.
While I went for frivolous and fun, the Architect went for practical and wholesome with his gifts. I’m by no means scoffing at the sentiment though, as his selection was in fact quite spot on.
The first thing was a set of Tintin books, several stories bound in each volume, and if I’m not mistaken, the series contains all the original stories. I’ve been thinking how it would be nice to have a set of the Tintin books for a long time, as they were some of my favourite comics back in the day. Not to mention, the entire set is in German, which while admittedly slowing my reading down, will make for a very fun way to brush up on my language skills.
I only included 2 books here. The whole set contains 8 books.
I suppose it’s pretty obvious where I get my love for trench coats. This and Sam Spade.
Now for this one, I invite you to just have a look at the thing first. It should simulate the experience I had when I first saw it.
It’s wood, beautifully finished and completely smooth. And yes, it’s supposed to be that way up.
Now that you’ve hopefully had a good think (who am I kidding, you of course saw all the thumbnails at one go so obviously already know what it is), I can reveal what it is. I have to admit that I had to be told the purpose of this thing, I don’t think I would’ve guessed it on my own.
Someone should suggest the manufacturer that several different sizes would be a good idea.
Yes, it’s a book rest. Quite a clever one too. I have it at the head of my bed and after a while I mentioned to the Architect that it really is quite handy, but what would make it really handy, would be to have one in every room. I then went “oh… wait” and realised I had become a victim of a truly brilliant marketing strategy.
And now, as the final item, my favourite practical and wholesome gift ever. Look on its beauty, ye Mighty, and despair.
An honest to bone, fully wooden walking staff.
Yes, it’s a walking staff. I’ve been eyeing some on the British Ebay, but haven’t found one I wanted to buy yet. Last autumn I spent my birthday running up and down along a mountain ridge and concluded that I really could use one. Now I have one. I’m considering ordering a kit to add an antler top to the staff, the very same British Ebay sells those too. I’d like a Y-shaped ending for the staff, for both practical and appearance reasons. I gave the staff a go on New Year, when we hiked up to a hilltop to watch the fireworks. I have to say that it serves its purpose well, having a third support point in awkward spots is really quite useful. I’m very much looking forward to putting it to its proper use next summer.
A wrist loop and a pretty little oak carging. I sort of would like to carve my “bookmark” into it, but am afraid of messing it up.
The rubber bottom comes off and reveals a metal end, not particularly sharp but should give some extra traction on slippery surfaces.
So there they are, my very welcome Christmas gifts for this winter. I do like practical gifts as well as frivolous ones, but it’s really nice when the practical gifts are fun and pretty as well.