Practical presents

Useful gifts for this post-disaster holiday season

PRESENT TENSE. Gift-giving has taken new meaning in these calamitous times. One can’t help but think twice about how to spend money, even for presents for loved ones. No doubt that trinkets, gadgets and toys, like this stuffed bear propped eerily on a post somewhere in a typhoon-ravaged town up north, can make people happy. But how useful — and essential — are they in the long run? (Foto by Freon L. Ollival)
PRESENT TENSE. Gift-giving has taken new meaning in these calamitous times. One can’t help but think twice about how to spend money, even for presents for loved ones. No doubt that trinkets, gadgets and toys, like this stuffed bear propped eerily on a post somewhere in a typhoon-ravaged town up north, can make people happy. But how useful — and essential — are they in the long run? (Foto by Freon L. Ollival)

GIFT-GIVING often leaves us in a state of panic as the holidays draw near. What to give our loved ones? Should you choose the latest smartphone over a smartwatch for the better half? Gift certificates over a boxed set of CD-DVDs for your bro? A customized accessory or a cool but quirky thingamajig for big sis? And what to give mom and dad?

In the past few holiday seasons, figuring out — over-analysing, even — what presents to give have become pointlessly wearisome. But these trying, calamitous times demand a different mindset, one that urges the giver to be more practical when it comes to gift giving, as the days of December go by quicker than you can say Merry Christmas.

Let’s face it: the recent earthquakes and supertyphoons were wake up calls, grave reminders that our sweet little lives are undeniably fragile. But on a positive note, the experiences that stemmed from these calamities have led as back to what really matters most — those closest to us.

Now, everything is all about the essentials, and life decisions tend to have become simpler, revolving around the basics. Should gift-giving be any different? Shouldn’t our holiday presents this season be more useful and attuned to these most uncertain of times, presents that are extremely useful in the event that another not-so-unlikely disaster strikes us closer to home?

Sun.Star Weekend has compiled several practical gifts that family members should find useful during emergency situations. Hopefully, though, there wouldn’t be a need to use any of these in the near future, but preparation through presents might not be that bad an idea.

Tent

Beyond camping

Every family can use a tent or two. Not only is it useful for outdoor trips, a tent can prove indispensable as shelter during calamities that leave homes unsafe or unlivable. Plenty of tents with good design are easy to store and easy to set up, like the Coleman 2-Person Sunrise Go! Dome Tent (available at Chris Sports before stocks ran out). You can also opt for a tent that can accommodate more people. Give one to the youngest in the family and make him the official tentkeeper.

present-first-aid-kitFirst aid kit

A well-stashed first aid kit in a handy case should be a perfect gift for moms. By well-stashed we mean the kit contains a number of the following first aid items: antiseptic towelletes, alcohol pads, sting relief pads, hand sanitizers, antibiotic ointment, burn cream, antacid tablets, aspirin tablets, non-aspirin tablets, first aid guide, instant cold compress, adhesive bandages, wound closure strips, gauze rolls, protective earloop mask, eye pads, sterile gauze pads, sterile trauma pad, cotton tip applicators, adhesive tape roll, finger splints triangular bandage, examination gloves, metal scissors, metal tweezers, among many others. You can find such a kit at S&R in Mandaue. Every home deserves one.

present-swiss-knife-1Tool for all seasons

Everyone, and we mean everyone, ought to keep a Swiss Army knife within reach all the time. And this wonder of a tool, made either by Victorinox AG and Wenger SA, is designed for everyday carry but has time and again proven handy in solving otherwise problematic situations, from cutting stuff with the knife to opening a wine bottle with the cork screw. There couldn’t be a more practical gift for big bro or sis.

Keep safe, dry and fire-resistant

Safes or cases that are resistant to both fire and water would make a perfect gift for dads, who usually take upon themselves the task of keeping important documents: land titles, insurance policies, contracts, among others. These cases, though heavy, can be hand-carried or lifted out of harm’s way. Check out Ace Hardware for some good quality fire and water resistant safes and cases.

present-fire-waterproof-safe

(Freon L. Ollival)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *