Friday, December 22, 2006

Letter to a Christmas nation

With apologies to my non-Christian friends.
(or, uh, actually more like 'with apologies to people who don't celebrate Christmas,' because what about the Jehovah's Witnesses who are and don't, or like me who isn't and does... oh well hey, it's Christmas, apologies all around!)

I had about a million errands yesterday.

I stopped at the coffee roaster in our neighborhood and bought 4 pounds of the best coffee I know - two to send to Bob's sisters and brothers in Boston, one to take to my aunt's house on Christmas day, and one for us. The coffee roaster's daughter is one of Big Man's best friends, so Mrs. Roaster and I critiqued the school's Winter Arts Festival the night before. The second graders did an interpretive dance - gotta love that.

I went to the local chocolate maker and bought almond bark to send to Boston and a pound of mixed to take to my aunt's, as well as a half pound of little chocolates wrapped in metallic foil to look like gifts, for the presents Big Man wants to make for his friends.

Next, I went to the Italian deli to buy olives and cheese - I'm making lasagna tonight for Joe & Jeannie and my parents. The place smelled so good and had all those Italian Christmas candies and stuff all around. As the guy was slicing the mortadella that I was buying for Bob as a special treat, a gear turned inside me. Before I knew what I was doing, I kissed Mr. Three and said, "Isn't Christmastime great?"

Then we stopped at the bookstore cafe and I talked a grandma into buying a really nice but kind of expensive board book for her baby grandson, and I bought a copy myself for my cousin's baby, and I chatted with two moms I know from Big Man's school who were sitting on the floor with their toddlers, knitting, along with the young woman who runs the fancy restaurant around the corner, and all of a sudden I just felt like saying, "Merry Christmas" to everyone I met.

This morning we delivered Aunt Janie's gift to the Big Man's school - a huge box of about 50 brand-new videos and DVDs, episodes of NOVA and Newton's Apple. Hurricanes! Tibet! Einstein! Archimedes! Bees! Easily $500 worth of science media for the school, which she got at a discount and simply handed over. Sometimes generosity just brings me to my knees.

Ok so today we have to fold 4 loads of laundry and vacuum the entire house in addition to making lasagna, getting all the xmas ornaments up from the basement, and delivering all the little gifties that Big Man made for his pals...

but it is happy work.

my best wishes for cheerful holidays and a happy New Year,

Your Neighborhood Librarian

The winner, after only 19 tries. (That's a success - one year it took 47.)

The Blind Boys of Alabama
Shawn Colvin
the Roches

Video playlist:
The Roches singing the Hallelujah Chorus on Saturday Night Live in 1979.
That engineer in Ohio's house lights.
John Denver singing The Twelve Days of Christmas with the Muppets.
Bob and Doug McKenzie talking about beernog.