What was the best gift you ever received?
I have two:
I had wanted a pocket knife when I was seven years old, but since I'd borrowed his pen knife and cut a large gash through the center of my thumb that same year, my dad thought it would be best to wait.
When I graduated from high school he presented me with a Swiss Army Knife -- The Waiter -- and a note:
"I think you're old enough now. "
A few summers later, I lost the knife as I was walking along a beach in Maine. I was a little upset until I realized it really wasn't the object itself that held the meaning. It was the memory. I'd always know where it was, even if I couldn't find it.
It was amazing to me that the place I lost the knife -- a place I'd never been before -- would be a place I'd revisit each year by coincidence of marriage.
The other gift that has a permanent place in my heart was a song written for me when I was 20 by a good friend (for whom I carried the teensiest bit of a crush). He recorded it on a tape cassette, which I still have in my possession.
I haven't seen this friend in years, nor have I heard the song since the day he sung it to me in his livingroom, but every time I come across the tape, the memory comes back. And I smile.