A few days before Christmas I picked up some Mennonite maple fudge at a farmer’s market. I even managed to get it home and into the fridge for a week without any of it mysteriously disappearing. The plan was to place it on fancy antique plate that had been my grandmother’s and present it to a niece as a hostess gift. That seemed particularly appropriate given that my grandmother Frances Stouffer (nee Hoover) came from a Pennsylvania Dutch / Mennonite background and every Christmas she would serve her own homemade maple fudge on that very plate.
The problem and my solution were decidedly non-Mennonite. As I was going to be driving 150 km to the family get-together, I felt that it would be best to wrap the plate in some sort of translucent plastic and finish with a bow. So off to the Eaton Centre I went, heading straight for the Hallmark Store.
This is where the plan started to unravel. The Eaton Centre Hallmark Store has closed. For good. I suppose that shouldn’t come as a surprise as I haven’t mailed Christmas cards in years and this year I received just two. I also tend to give gift cards or pick up tabs in restaurants so I don’t buy a lot of gift wrap these days.
Surely Shopper’s Drug Mart would still have cellophane on December 27, wouldn’t they? Nope. Shoppers had 5 rolls of wrapping paper in stock – in a lovely skull and crossbones motif – but no cellophane. The cashier suggested Indigo.
When asked if they carried cellophane, a 20-something female clerk at Indigo said, “Cellophane? Liiiiike plastic?” while shooting me a look as if I had asked to skin a baby seal right there in the store. She suggested recycled tissue paper that came in packs of 4 sheets for about $18,000. Or thereabouts. Maybe a bit less.
It was at that point that I remembered Dollarama at Yonge & Dundas. Not three meters inside their door was a display of about 500 rolls of clear and silver-tinted cellophane for a buck a roll. I resisted the urge to stock up and left the store with a single roll, happy to have saved $17,999. Or thereabouts.
The next morning, just before setting out for the family get-together, I went to wrap the fudge and realized that I must have left the cellophane on the subway.