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Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Merry Christmas, Mrs. Chaney!

Today started off well anyway. Very sunny and appropriately cold. I was ready for Gal Friday and looking forward to getting things done that I can't do- especially finding the missing light in the bottom tier of the tree so I could get on with decorating. Laundry is piling up, shopping needs doing, etc. Gal Friday comes but she's getting a migraine. She wants to go home ASAP and I don't blame her. All goes out the window but shopping- which has to be done because the Heat Fund Radio Hour is tomorrow and I have a pot of chicken chow mein to make today. Everything else will have to wait.

Fine, as long as the food gets made, I'll get over myself. To hell with Lucia Day and traditions, the tree will get lit when it gets lit. In fact, all the decorating can wait. The set of bell lights have to get a new bulb fitted at Brown & Roberts anyway and that's not happening today either. Laundry will continue to pile, and I'm grateful I have enough clothing to not have to wear dirty things. Fine, just cook and give the rest of the day up as a bad job. But slicing isn't easy because my hand won't hold a knife very long. I'm working in a 1 foot by 2 foot space because this is a little Hobbit house. I can't taste much, as my nose is still a mess. But I cook it and hope for the best. They're always happy to see free food, no matter what- an easy audience. So at least that's done and cooling on the stove right now. I emailed the recipe to the boys, Daryl will be by in the morning to pick up and it's over for another month. Get over yourself, Austan.

But I'm really struggling with frustration. I've never taken frustration well and as I get less capable and it rears up much more often, it gets ugly. I can be an absolute bitch even under good circumstances. After a day like today it's a very good thing I live alone.

Then the mail comes. I hear the mail guy cursing and the sound of a box hitting the floor. Then he shoves a puffy envelope through the slot, struggling and muttering. I go to the door. It looks like a video stuck in the slot, but I didn't order any. I pull it in and go push the box into my apartment. I sit down and open the puffy envelope and it is a video- "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn". This could only be from Kick. I look at the packing slip and yes, it is. And I cry.

This season isn't about the trappings, the lights and hoohahs and trees and everything being done on time. It's about 5 years ago on some dark February night in my old apartment, when Kick and I talked about growing up in NYC and loving this old movie about life in ye olde Brooklyn. And here, years later, she's married and a couple hundred miles away, and remembers.

That's what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown. I love ya, Kick. Merry Christmas. x


Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe said...

You and your big heart know really know what Christmas is about. You are such a kind, caring person. Enjoy your movie ( I saw it many years ago, but still remember it).

The Elephant's Child said...

Christmas is about love. You give it out, you get it back. Thank you for being you - a warm hearted, inspiring person - who sometimes also channels the psycho bitch from hell - which makes you human in my book.

Anonymous said...

There you go....things will get done eventually, it's the people that matter.

Geo. said...

When I retired and stopped spending the main part of the day away, I learned about the constant holiday planning readjustments that went magically on in my absence. I am now an idiot, but have great respect for those who puzzle out preparations. My admiration, Austan.

Katheleen Chaney said...

That moment will remain a perfect memory...let it be our movie and think of me every time you see it. I adore you my true sister.

Katheleen Chaney said...

Don't tell me that tree is gonna lay down and die that easily. Look at that tree. See where it's coming from?
Right up outta that cement! Didn't nobody plant it. Didn't ask the cement to grow. It just couldn't help growing so much it just pushed that old cement out of the way. Now when you bust it with something like that, can't anybody help it, like... like that little ole bird up there. He didn't ask anybody could he sing and he certainly didn't take any lessons. He's so full of singing it just has to bust out someplace. Why they could cut that ole tree right down to the ground and a root would push up someplace else in the cement.

klahanie said...

Hi Laura,

What a wonderful, magical moment. A truly thoughtful gift.

And oh yeah, where the heck is my fake tree? Still in the loft and the darned dog needs something to jump at. Reluctantly, I shall go into the loft. Charlie Brown, yep. Grinch, oops! :)