Random Thoughts from a Restless Mind

Dr. Darrell White's Personal Blog

Cape Cod

Christmas musings…

Boy, where did the day get to? What with 10 inches of snow to shovel, presents to open, and grandchildren to entertain (and be entertained by), I guess it’s no surprise that it’s just now, 5:00 somewhere, that I’m finally getting to my keyboard to wish both of you who read my stuff a very Merry Christmas!

It’s been a year, hasn’t it? And yet today (and last night) was just wonderful. There’s nothing like the wonder of a child, a believer, when they see the miracle of a tree surrounded by gift wrapped dreams, eh? Beth and I got that twice. How lucky is that? Our soon-to-be fifth grandchild, a little girl, declined to join us for either Christmas Eve or Christmas morning. The wife of one of my very best friends in the world approves; she flatly states that December 26th is a lousy day for birthing and so she’s calling the 27th and putting all of her markers on that square.

Did I ever tell you how my folks ended up with a quadrennial Christmas rotation among their children for the Christmas Holiday? No matter; Dr. Fauci says I’m elderly now so I’m entitled to telling repeats. Mom’s nose was out of joint because she didn’t receive a “proper” invitation to one of our homes for Christmas. When my younger sister asked whose house she’d visit she said “no one”. Instead she and my Dad would go see the Rockets (which he supposedly had on his bucket list). They would travel by bus, accompanied by all the other parents left behind that Christmas by their kids. My poor sister found herself deep in a hole but continued digging, asking what they would eat for Christmas dinner. “Why, we’ll have a brown bag turkey sandwich. We’ll toast our fellow Christmas refugees on the bus with stale chips washed down with flat Coke.”

And that, my friends, is how my folks ended up in the grand Christmas rotation.

Why tell this story (again) now? Mostly just to be a wise guy. Beth and I are alone at Casa Blanco for dinner tonight. Man, did I over-shop. It’s no one’s fault but mine that I have enough salmon to feed a high school basketball team and no one to share it with. Ok, maybe just the starting 5. But still, all I had to do was ask what the plans were and I would have realized that the blessings of having Christmas Eve dinner with one son and his family, and then spending the entire day with my other son and his were going to be my cup overflowith for the year. Still, if for no other reason than the pure entertainment of sending my Mom a pic, Beth and I will spend a bit of time on Netflix or wherever trying to find a vintage Rockettes video to watch. And send pictures to my kids and my siblings. And a big ol’ love note to my Mom telling her how much I miss her and wish it was my year to have my Mom and Dad here with us to open gifts. Go to Mass. Be wined and dined by our other best friends for the 28th consecutive Christmas night.

Yes, it’s been a year, for sure. And yet, here I am, happy. Blessed. Sharing this sacred day and night with the love of my life. My little Aussie plastered to my leg. I’ve mixed the first cocktail of the night, one of my Love’s favorites (a French 75). With a nod to my friend Bill’s annual Beef Wellington we will dine on Salmon Wellington. Beth and I will reflect on our blessings. The joys we have each and every day. It’s different today, Christmas Day. It just is. Still, it needn’t be. What we cherish about Christmas could be an every day thing and Christmas would still be special. Really. It would. But each and every other day would be so much more–don’t you think?–if it was a bit more like Christmas.

I’d love to take credit for that idea, but it’s not mine. Each year I remind myself, and anyone who joins me here, that making “that Christmas thing last” is within our grasp. We have Paul O’Neil, the genius behind the Tans-Siberian Orchestra, to thank for that. And so I will leave you with his words from my very, very favorite Christmas song, “An Olde City Bar” from the epic Christmas rock opera “Christmas Eve, and Other Stories” in the hope that you, too, will see the Christmas in each and every day.

And seize the chance…

“If you want to arrange it
This world, you can change it
If we could somehow
Make this Christmas thing last
By helping a neighbor
Or even a stranger
To know who needs help,
You need only just ask.”

Merry Christmas my friends.

I’ll see you Sunday…

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