Wrapping purchases

The time and care expended by shop assistants in Italy on the wrapping of gifts can be astonishing.

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The cost of the purchase is irrelevant. The same care will be taken in wrapping a discounted paperback book or a pair of diamond earrings.

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Blithely indifferent to the queue building up behind you, the assistant will patiently fold over corners to form perfect isosceles triangles, use different-colored (but always exquisitely contrasting) wrapping paper to create diagonal stripes across the package, and then tie it with a length of ribbon that is made to end in delicate spirals.

The finished package will then be handed to you with aplomb.

Hooper, John. The Italians (pp. 77-78). Penguin Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

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