The Woman Who Loved Presents

Once upon a time, there was a young woman named Julie who loved to get presents. She found, though, that she didn’t really care what the present was. It was more about the surprise of having a present, and the joy of unwrapping it. Once it was unwrapped, the entire experience was more or less over.

One day, Julie’s coworker gave her a little wrapped box, saying that she just saw it and thought of her. Julie ripped it open excitedly. It was a little paperweight with a bluebird in the middle (Julie loved bluebirds).

“Thank you!” said Julie. “I love it!”

And she did love it, but not as much as she had when it was wrapped. Julie absently picked up the scraps of torn wrapping paper, wrapped them back over the paperweight, and ripped open the present again. “Yay!” she thought to herself, as the paperweight was revealed. Then, Julie remembered that she had some leftover wrapping paper in her desk from the previous Christmas. She got it out, wrapped the paperweight up, and ripped it open again.

“Yay!” Julie whispered. She wrapped it again, ripped it open again.

Julie did this all afternoon. Her coworker watched her. She was greatly disturbed.

On her way home that evening, Julie stopped off at the drugstore and bought as much wrapping paper, tissue, ribbons and bows as she could carry. She went home and spent all night wrapping every single thing in her house. She wrapped the chairs and the tables. She wrapped the sofa. She wrapped the paintings on the walls. She wrapped every dish in every cupboard, each piece of flatware in the drawers, all the cans in the pantry and the produce in the fridge. She wrapped batteries and coasters and lamps and shoes and all of her clothes and toiletries. She rolled up her rugs and wrapped them. She wrapped the doors. She wrapped the walls. She climbed the roof and wrapped the chimney and put a giant bow on top of the house.

Then, she began to wrap herself. She wrapped her nose and her ears and each finger and toe. She wrapped her arms and legs. She wrapped each of her eyes. She wrapped every hair on her head. And then she sat very still and waited to be a surprise.

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