Ophidian Parting Gifts Tradition / Ritual in Aerune | World Anvil

Ophidian Parting Gifts

Ophidians, as one of the most populous peoples across Aerune, have a heavy cultural influence on the global multispecies culture. One of the better-known and widely-spread Ophidian traditions is that of a friendly parting gift, which contrasts with other common cultural gift-giving traditions:  
  • Some humans: I bring a politeness gift to my host, usually a food or drink to be shared while I'm visiting
  • Some dwarves: I bring a pragmatic gift to those I respect and/or those I care about, usually a tool or a consumable resource that I know they need and will use
  • Some elves: I bring a unique and fleeting gift to show my appreciation or respect (delicate papercraft or living flowers that will not last long)
  • And then Phiddies are just like, yeah, I'm not bringing you nothing. However I will send you on your way after our conversation/visit with exactly the kind of small item or resource that I think you need, based on our interaction and my interpretation of your situation.
  •   Default items can range from homemade good luck charms (frequently from younger or poorer individuals) to a few spare coins (from someone of equal or higher wealth; otherwise it's a bit of an insult) to a small note of encouragement, comfort, or poetry (very common from older individuals or family members). The longer one spends with one's guests, the more specific a gift can be: a new leatherworking needle to replace one lost, the exact coinage needed for the next ferry, a small woven or beaded bracelet in personally-symbolic colors, a new whetstone or a sharper knife.   None of the gifts are meant to be Significant in a way that would potentially incur feelings of social or material debt--that's a different kind of thing which does not fall in the category of Ophidian parting gifts. These parting gifts are trivial and personal and given with the same attitude that one might have when setting a lovingly-made paper boat adrift on a stream: it was chosen, made, prepared with care and thought, and what happens to it once it is given does not matter. It may be treasured, it may be used, it may be appreciated, it may be lost or broken, it may be cast aside or regifted or even resold, and that does not matter to the gifter; the gifter has done their part to contribute to the living circulation of the greater social animal of their communities.
    by Ty Barbary via Midjourney and DALL-E 2
    by Ty Barbary via Midjourney and DALL-E 2