My husband is notoriously terrible at gift buying. When he was in the US, my parents would take him shopping for myself and I for them. He simply could not accomplish the task alone. Even when I was quite explicit about things I would enjoy receiving, he just could not buy them when alone. I didn’t want to be with him when he bought my gifts because I enjoy being surprised. But, once in Mexico, there was no one to hold his hand.
Starting in November, 2011, Sal was constantly asking me about things I wanted. I was happy, thinking that this would be the year he would actually surprise me with a gift. I began pointing things out that interested me, hoping that he would have the courage to choose one of them.
We went to a local store the day before I left to travel home in 2011. Until that point, all we had was a small and ugly laundry basket for our dirty clothes. I wanted something nicer and bigger, something that wasn’t a sore spot in the bedroom. I pointed out a nice hamper to him. “I want this,” I told him. “You should buy it and that can be my present.”
I left some money with him since he was off work without pay during the holiday break. Then I went home for a week.
I returned to find no hamper. I asked what happened. He said he was sorry, that he just couldn’t find the time during the week I was gone. He then gave me some of my own money and told me I could go buy it.
I was surprised.