T’was The Day Before Christmas

While I have sat here and tried to come up with a Christmas story that would bring laughter or tears, I have found the chore more than just a little daunting. I can only bring myself to an empty page to share with my friends and family. I am reminded that some families’ sendoff letters to the rest of theirs to share with them all that has happened over the year, in summary of course. I thought of doing something similar but then I realized that I needed to a life to write about first. I have found myself faced with an interesting quandary. I thought of a t’was the night before feature, but realized that it had probably been done to death, then there was the miracle on thirty-fourth street idea, I however could not come up with a suitable cast that would sufficiently engage your minds. Perhaps a gift of the magi or maybe a turn at a Christmas Carol, but I think that the original is still the best so perhaps that is not such a good idea either.
While I was debating the story I was interrupted by a knock on my motel room door, thinking it was housekeeping I went quickly to the door to keep them from opening it and catching me half dressed in my unawares, no not underwear, unawares the polite term for… well I can only hope that you get the idea. Reaching the door I heard a small voice announce that they had a package for me.
I was more than just a little surprised as there were very few that even knew where it was that I was staying. Opening the door I found before me a short person that I could only gather was a dwarf, no political correctness meant, but at just over three feet I could hardly call him little people after all it was a person not a people. He handed me the package, for which I signed, I thanked him and even gave him a dollar for his troubles. I wished him a Merry Christmas in my best non-baa humbug way, but I could tell that he wasn’t buying it, and closed the door behind me.
Setting the package on the small motel table I went back to my laptop and returned to my work. Several minutes later I heard a noise coming from that package that I had signed for. Tearing the brown wrap from around the box and cutting the tape that held the flaps tight, I opened the box slowly, inside I found a miniature pear tree with a tiny bird perched on one of its upper branches and it made a little chirping noise every so often. There was a card inside, it read: for the memory of things past and of course it was unsigned. Now there is probably any number of people that could have sent it to me none of which however, knew where I was.
I went back to my work when I was again interrupted by a knock on the door. Opening the door I again found the same person with another package, again I signed for it, bid him a Merry Christmas, non baa humbug of course, and closed the door not thinking of asking him who the original was from. I wasted no time in opening this one, as I heard cooing coming from inside, I found… you guessed it two doves, were they turtledoves; beats me I’ve never seen one before. It too came with a card; however the birds must have been hungry, as they had eaten more than half of it. I was able to surmise what it once had said: for the memory of things past, o.k., so it was the same thing. I went back to my work, deciding that someone was either playing a joke on me or the gifts had been meant for someone else that had been staying in my room. As the doves cooed and the tiny partridge chirped I again tried to work on a Christmas story idea. The cooing and the chirping were actually beginning to have somewhat of a calming effect on me and before I knew it I was asleep on my keyboard. I awoke sometime later to a knock on my door and my blank pages now numbered more than a hundred.
If you’re are thinking that I am going to say that it was the same person at my door I am going to have to stop you right there as it wasn’t him, it was a different one with, yes, you guessed it another package, where they French hens beats me a chicken is a chicken. I placed the box on the floor next to the table and tried through the clucking, cooing and chirping to work on my Christmas story. You can by now figure out what happened for the rest of the day… those two little bastards kept knocking on my door and bringing me these packages. I finally was able to ask them who it was this person with the sick sense of humor that was sending me these packages, their only reply, was that I was to read the cards and I would figure it out. I know that that sounds like an easy plan, however have you ever tried to put together a mystery with when all you have to go on is memories of the past. I can’t say for everybody I know, but I know that I just don’t remember every person that I ever came in contact with, especially those that just might fall into the sick humor category.
By the time I had received the seven swans I was no longer able to concentrate on my work, by the way just what is a calling bird? I finally gave up altogether when the eight maids showed up with their cows for more reasons than one. I like milk but I think that eight was just over kill I think I could have done just fine with one and maybe seven cutouts. It goes without saying that my little motel room had long run out of room and was bordering on overstuffed and beginning to take on the aroma of a barn. When the nine ladies dancing showed up I was forced to keep them outside in the parking lot, how thankful I was that I was on the first floor and that I was close to the outside. Before I could figure out where I was going to get enough food for the now hungry crowd I had signed for the ten leaping lords and the eleven pipers playing on their pipes, although I could have sworn that I saw smoke coming from more than one of those pipes. Then next thing I knew, the police were showing up because of a noise complaint about the drums and the pipes, I could only watch as they arrested three of the pipers and one of the drummers for smoking something that they had claimed was strictly for medicinal purposes, musicians you can’t trust them. It was around about then that things began to get out of control, the maids placed their milk stools in a pile and along with the furniture from my room, a fire was lit, recipes were hunted up, and before you could say what the *&%^$)@, dinner was served.
The police were back and they were making passes at the ladies dancing while the milkmaids were making passes at the lords a leaping about that time it was very clear to me that any thought of my writing a Christmas story was history. How could I sit in all this mess and noise and be able to create a story that could even come close to… well anything. It was midnight before things began to settle down and as they sat around the coals of the fire as a whole cow was being turned on a spit over the top of them, the ragged bunch began to sing Christmas carols, I had no heart to join them, bah humbug that I am anyway. As I sat curled up in a ball and hoped with all my heart that just one of those little bastards would show up so I could ask him why or who, I was approached by the first of the little bastards, he handed me a card that read, yes, ‘for memories past’. After asking the part of my question, I turned the card over and noticed something I had not seen before. It read: Please deliver to: Room 714. I felt my face turn red and my blood pressure rise even higher as I turned and pointed out to the %^@*#^$$ #&#% (*!&^#%$@ that I was in room 417.
He claimed that he was sorry, I claimed that he was, well you know, so now it’s Christmas Day and I have time to sit and write a story for my friends and family, but once again I am in a quandary as to the subject of the story.
So as I sit here before my meal of swan, chicken and dove, to my friends and family and family of friends I guess I will just have to say Merry Christmas to all and to all a Happy New Year.

By the way, do any of you out there have a recipe for Elf? There’s a gold ring in it for you if you do.

2003 December


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