Sunday, December 21, 2008

A christmas story

Here's a nice little Christmas story for you.

The Truth About Santa Claus

I remember my first Christmas adventure with Grandma.I was just a kid.I remember tearing across town on my bike to visit her on theday my big sister dropped the bomb: "There is no Santa Claus,"she jeered. "Even dummies know that!"My Grandma was not the gushy kind, never had been. I fled toher that day because I knew she would be straight with me.I knew Grandma always told the truth, and I knew that the truthalways went down a whole lot easier when swallowed with one ofher "world-famous" cinnamon buns. I knew they were world-famous,because Grandma said so. It had to be true.Grandma was home, and the buns were still warm. Between bites,I told her everything. She was ready for me."No Santa Claus?" She snorted... "Ridiculous! Don't believe it.That rumor Has been going around for years, and it makes me mad,plain mad! Now, put On your coat, and let's go.""Go? Go where, Grandma?" I asked. I hadn't even finished mysecond world-famous cinnamon bun."Where" turned out to be Kerby's General Store, the one storein town that had a little bit of just about everything. As wewalked through its doors, Grandma handed me ten dollars. Thatwas a bundle in those days. "Take this money," she said, "andbuy something for someone who needs it. I'll wait for you inthe car." Then she turned and walked out of Kerby's.I was only eight years old. I'd often gone shopping with mymother, but never had I shopped for anything all by myself.The store seemed big and crowded, full of people scrambling tofinish their Christmas shopping. For a Few moments I juststood there, confused, clutching that ten-dollar bill,wondering what to buy, and who on earth to buy it for.I thought of everybody I knew: my family, my Friends, myneighbors, the kids at school, and the people who went to mychurch.I was just about thought out, when I suddenly thought of BobbyDecker. He was a kid with bad breath and messy hair, and hesat right behind me in Mrs. Pollock's grade-two class.Bobby Decker didn't have a coat. I knew that because he neverwent out to recess during the winter. His mother always wrotea note, telling the teacher that he had a cough, but all wekids knew that Bobby Decker didn't have a cough; he didn't havea good coat. I fingered the ten-dollar bill with growingexcitement. I would buy Bobby Decker a coat!I settled on a red corduroy one that had a hood to it.It looked real warm, and he would like that."Is this a Christmas present for someone?" the lady behind thecounter asked Kindly, as I laid my ten dollars down."Yes, ma'am," I replied shyly. "It's for Bobby."The nice lady smiled at me, as I told her about how Bobby reallyneeded a Good winter coat. I didn't get any change, but she putthe coat in a bag, smiled again, and wished me a Merry Christmas.That evening, Grandma helped me wrap the coat (a little tagfell out of the coat, and Grandma tucked it in her Bible) inChristmas paper and ribbons and wrote, "To Bobby, From SantaClaus" on it. Grandma said that Santa always insisted onsecrecy. Then she drove me over to Bobby Decker's house,explaining as we went that I was now and forever officially,one of Santa's Helpers. Grandma parked down the street fromBobby's house, and she and I crept noiselessly and hid in thebushes by his front walk. Then Grandma gave me a nudge. "Allright, Santa Claus," she whispered, "get going."I took a deep breath, dashed for his front door, threw thepresent down on his step, pounded his door and flew back tothe safety of the bushes and Grandma. Together we waitedbreathlessly in the darkness for the front door to open.Finally it did, and there stood Bobby.Fifty years haven't dimmed the thrill of those moments spentshivering, beside my Grandma, in Bobby Decker's bushes. Thatnight, I realized that those awful rumors about Santa Clauswere just what Grandma said they were: Ridiculous.Santa was alive and well, and we were on his team.I still have The Bible, with the coat tag tucked inside:$19.95.

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