Delivering the Christmas Spirit
This time of year, fueled by the spirit of Christmas, we say, “Merry Christmas”, or “Happy Holidays” to everyone we meet. We all do that, right? Truth be told, and we know if for a fact, rarely do we run into someone who truly has the Spirit of Christmas.
But, every now and again…
My sister, Diane, has a son, Dante, who is an Army Ranger stationed in Georgia. For Christmas, she wanted to mail his Christmas stocking to him before he shipped out. She only had a few days to get it to him. The stocking was filled with gift cards, candies that he liked, and some other ‘extras’ for his trip (not sure why the air quotes around ‘extras’, but that is between a mother and her son).
At the post office, she explained the situation with her son to the clerk behind the counter, and wanted to ensure that Christmas gift would arrive before he left. Unfortunately, she was told that there was no guarantee on its delivery if sent through normal channels. However, if she sent it 2-Day Priority, it would arrive on-time.
“How much would that cost?” she asked.
The clerk pressed a few keys, and in a few seconds a price came up on the display. The cost would be just under fifty dollars.
Before my sister could even say anything, a woman who stood behind her in line, who had overheard the exchange between my sister and the clerk, chimed in and said, “Excuse me, but I would like to pay that for you”.
My sister was startled, and quickly put her hand over the price displayed. “Thank you very much, that is very nice of you, but this is way too expensive.”
But the woman insisted, and went on to explain.
“My nephew was in the Navy,” she said, “and I always worried when he was somewhere other than home. I can’t even begin to imagine how you must feel right now, so, please, let me pay.”
My sister, was overwhelmed with emotions and gratitude for the woman, this stranger, who just happened to be standing behind her.
My sister cried, and hugged the woman. The woman returned the hug, and handed over three twenties to the woman behind the counter.
While they continued the hug, the clerk handed the change back over the counter. With tears in her eyes, caught up in the moment, and without thinking, my sister reached out and took the money from the clerk’s hand.
“Okay,” the woman laughed, and still in my sister’s embrace, said, “maybe that’s taking things a bit too far”.
It is nice to know that there are people out there in our world, people that our willing to step out of line, in order to ease at least some of a soldier’s mother’s burden.