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A Christmas Visit

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Santa TJS

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Well today is December 21,2007 and I made an important visit today,not as Santa but as myself but with Santa in my heart. I went to visit my Uncle who is 94 years old and still lives on his own in the same house he bought after returning from WWII. Well as I arrived the house was snow covered the driveway not plowed as he does not drive anymore.The front gate slighty adjar frozen in ice and snow for the foreseeable future only a few footprints on the stairs covered in snow from the last three storms.I quickily unloaded my car with the things I had brought.As usual ther were no signs indicating the Christmas holiday at his home.My first trip up the snowy stairs I carried a beautifully decorated real Christmas wreath and quickly fastened it to the hook on the door where for more years than I can remember I have come by and hung the wreath.The fresh smell filled the porch. Then it was back to the car for the small artificial tree I had brought. No sooner did I come up the stairs ther was my Uncle waiting to see me.I could tell he was grateful just for the company. When you reach 94 and you are still opertaing on your own as my uncle tells me most of your friends including the younger ones are dead. He frequently mentions some of the younger friends who died (most in their seventies) he seems anoyed that they have gone and left him. Well back to the car for a new reading lamp for him and 20 pound of ice melt for his stairs. I spent a few minutes shoveling them off and putting out the ice melt. Then it was inside to set up the small tree in the rather dark and cluttered living room. I set up the lamp and the small tree gets it place of honor by the front door.Every year I bring a small tree of one kind or another and they are usually still up at Easter. Well this year I brought a small fiber optic tree which lights in a magical aray of color as do the ornaments. After he marveled at the rainbow of color he seemed concerned about the heat from all those lights on the tree.After showing him there was only a tiny 12 volt bulb as the source of this rainbow of color I was sure he still did not understand what fiber optics were about.We we sat there in the darked room surrounded by the past recalling years ago and the many stories and good time we all had together all the time watching this small tree fill the room with light. Alas now most of the folks we talked about this cold afternoon are gone from us now including my Aunt gone over 40 years. We sat and enjoyed the long remberences of Christmases past. Before it was time to go I gave him a card putting in a couple of hundred bucks. He did not want the money my visit and the few things I brought were more than enough he said. I insisted making the point that heating oil is up to $3.40 a gallon and Social security does not buy what it used to. We left at the door both happy for the time together, precious time actually especially for one who is spedning his 94th Christmas at home.One thing he said as I left was how he missed my mother ( his baby sister,gone now 11 years) for she was born on Christmas. I said I miss her too every day as I headed for the car with a lump in my throat. I sit here at home tonight figuring out my Christmas eve Santa schedule and I want to say to you all if you have an elderly relative or friend take and hour out of your schedule and pay them a visit over the next 3 days.It is far better than any shiny present you can find under a tree.

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