Advent Calendar December 7: Grab Bag
Today's Advent Calendar Topic is a grab bag, which means I get to choose my own topic. Yesterday we posted on Santa Claus, so I thought I'd continue on that trend for today, which describes an unintentional encounter with Santa and how I found out the true meaning of Santa.
A memory I failed to mention yesterday about Santa was one when we were coming home from Grandma and Grandpa McHUGH's house in Niagara Falls. We'd spent Christmas Eve as usual, eating dinner and exchanging (actually, getting!) gifts with grandparents and aunts/uncles/cousins. We would all dress up for this evening, as we would when going to Christmas Mass the next day. One year I wore a pink velvet skirt with matching vest, white blouse and black knee-high boots!
On this one particular Christmas Eve we left grandpa and grandma's house later than usual. My brothers and I were in the back seat of the car, as most kids would be. We were driving a different way than normal, though I don't recall why. I do recall, however, driving on the road that is beneath the reservoir and seeing red flashing lights in the sky. I remember YELLING at my dad to "HURRY UP AND DRIVE, SANTA'S UP THERE AND IF WE'RE NOT ASLEEP BEFORE HE GETS TO OUR HOUSE HE WON'T STOP AT OUR HOUSE!".
Ah, the innocence of youth. A year or two later, I remember sitting next to my mom at, I believe the store was called LaBelle's. It was a catalog type store, where you'd order something from the catalog, then pick it up at the store. Anyway, as we were sitting there, it dawned on me that if there was a Santa, why would mom be here buying my Christmas present (she'd already told me that a bike was one of my gifts,, though I don't recall why)? So I looked at mom and simply said, "There is no Santa, is there?". She answered what good parents do: She said the Spirit of Christmas was as real as any figure we attach to it.
My dad, assembling my Barbie Townhouse and opening his gift.