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Two years ago, my auntie Adriana traveled to Portugal and brought me back a cork purse. I had never heard of “cork fabric” and was quite delighted by it. My purse feels like leather, but it is made from the bark of cork trees in Portugal. Cork is harvested by periodically separating the bark from the tree without causing permanent damage to the tree. Yeah, the tree is left standing. I had no idea. The thing that surprises me most about my cork purse is how durable it is. I have uncorked more than my fair share of wine bottles, and those bottle corks break all the time. My cork purse is a different story. After using it for well...

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