This would be where I ponder why I haven't had much to say recently, but I think it may just be that things go that way sometimes... My master's course is rushing quite worryingly to the final deadline (three weeks on Tuesday), so that's taking a lot of my attention; otherwise I'm rather fruitlessly searching for somewhere to live next year (since it seems pretty likely I'm carrying on to do a PhD).
But now, dear gang, I come crawling back in need of your help! A friend of mine is getting married in August, and I don't really have any idea what to get her. She doesn't have a registry, and she and her fiancé comment in the invite that they don't want too much stuff, because they're still moving in and out of rented accommodation (they're both medical students), and really would prefer money (though they'd really value anything - aww...). Personally, though, I don't want to give them just money, if only because it is
a wedding gift. They could use it wisely and beneficially I'm sure (not that I'm thinking of giving them enough to really make a dent in anything), but I would rather give them something that they might still find useful ten years down the line - they're both Christian and I'm sure the wedding itself will be important to them, so it seems right that they should have some souvenirs of the day, rather than just a reduction in what they have to shell out for rent that month.
Of course, I have absolutely no idea what would be the best thing to give them! I don't want to cause them hassle they don't want, so I'm thinking it'll have to be practical and non-breakable. My mum's thought was that if we worked out the right sort of thing by wandering around some department stores, then I could go to a quirky independent/antique shop and find something unique. But I've been browsing websites and am not sure I'm going to get very far. (No one really wants a pepper grinder, do they? But bowls and teapots will always need boxes and packaging.) Does anyone have any ideas?
Also, I think I've seen a couple of people mentioning Kiva loans
in the past, which I think would probably be the sort of route I'd go down if I were to give them some money - as a supplement or on its own - so that they would still get
the money (I'm all for charitable giving, but donations on other people's behalf just seems a little rude, unless you know
that's what they want), but that money would still actually do something worthwhile in the process. I've never used the site myself, though, so I was wondering if anyone who has could explain it to me a little more from a gift-giving perspective. By which I mean the rather mercenary questions of a) how long does it take (generally) to get the money back (obviously taking into account the very slight risk it won't come at all) and b) how does that money come into your account - is it in useful increments of $25, or is it all trickly and hard to withdraw from PayPal? What are your experiences with it generally?
Cheers for your thoughts!