This Christmas was a first. Zooming in with high technology on Christmas morning was a little different from years gone by. My granddaughter Leila turned two this past November and she may have some hazy memories of the magic that happens in some households on Christmas morning.
It was fun, even from the Zoom distance to see her excitement at the Christmas magic. Later, I wrote a little story, it was about a memory that I had when I was a child, inspired by that excitement in my granddaughter’s voice.
When I was young the festive season was all about magic. Those mornings when excitement ran so wild, from a lack of sleep, worries about all this, you better be good, you better not pout stuff. The excitement of not knowing if what you wanted would be under the tree. What if some, or even all of the gift boxes were full of charcoal?
My mom told me to be good or else I might just find coal under the tree. That thought scared me, worried me so much I had trouble sleeping.
My brother and I would make so much noise on Christmas morning. We wanted our parents to share in the excitement.
Finally, the parents awoke and we hear them shuffling about downstairs; they are up and about. Peaking out of our bedroom, my older brother and I sneak to the living room. We’re not sure if the coast is clear.
Our parents had to be first on the Christmas scene. They said they had to make sure Santa hadn’t left a mess. The parents put out treats, cookies and milk for Santa and they wanted to make sure he didn’t break anything.
Sure enough, the cookies were gone and the milk was mostly drunk. My father drank the rest of the milk and wiped his mouth with his hand, still chomping away at something.
The room glowed, that must have been the remnants of magic. Our Christmas tree lights were left on all night, that way Santa would be guided to our home.
The fire in the fireplace was put out, the lights on the mantle left on. We ran to the fireplace mantel and our mom pulled down the stockings; always the first thing to check.
I couldn’t help myself, I had to look into the living room and there it was. I could not believe it, there was a train running through the living room. The trains whistle tooting at every crossing. I asked Santa for that train, a complete set, a 24 piece set up with a town, with people, animals and crossings, and all the railway track, and even a caboose.
I got it, I got it. I was so happy I was actually shaking with joy.
The stocking became the least important thing. Ah, socks, underwear, and — oh good, some chocolates. Ok, all done, let me at that train set.
The magic of Christmas. I remember that excitement, the joy of getting the gift that you had always wanted, the one that you prayed and wished for.
The best Christmas ever.
Thank you, Santa.
Copyright © 2021 Paul Yanuziello, All rights reserved.