Friday, December 5, 2008

A Cup of Cheer

I cleaned out my car last night. It needed it bad. Ken said it looked like a homeless person was living in it. I normally wear one pair of comfy shoes to work and then change when I get there. The shoes don't always make it out of my car. I had been transporting files back and forth from our offices as well. AND, all the junk from Young Women in Excellence (dress-up clothes, stereo and CDs, lights, spotlights, and dirty dishes from the church) were in there too. So, yeah, homeless looking to say the least. Anyway I cleaned it all out and found a ton of change. TONS! I don't really know where it came from either because I rarely have cash. I put it in a little bucket and figured I'd treat myself to a JBC (junior bacon cheeseburger) every day for the next month.
When I went inside Ken asked if I would mind running to Albertson's to get some eggs for the meat loaf. So, me and my newly cleaned car take a jaunt to Alby's (as Karlenn calls it). It was there in the parking lot I heard it. The Salvation Army Bell Ringer. I watched her for awhile before getting out of my car. She looked at everyone and smiled and rang her bell hoping someone would drop a few pennies in. I was really surprised by how many people avoided her. Some people went in the out doors. Some people zoomed by her looking the other way- yeah, couldn't even look at her! Sheesh! Some people looked at her a shrugged as if to say, "Sorry- I can't even spare a dime." Now, I know that some people really can't spare a dime. Some people live on a really tight budget. But some people can! Some of those people were probably going into Albertson's to buy snacks! Or Egg Nog! Not necessities! And on the Bell Ringer rang.
So, I hefted up my bucket and headed straight for her. I was ready to dump all my change into that little red bucket. I walked up to her and told her Merry Christmas and started putting my change in. She was so happy and very conversational. She asked all about my Christmas plans and where I found all this change and if I had kids and on and on. It just brightened my day. A family with some little kids walked by and they asked their mom if they could have change to give to the lady. She told them no. So, I (overstepping my boundaries) told them they could help me put some of my change in. The mom let them do that and soon we were all talking about Santa and Christmas and giving to people.
It was such a cool experience. Putting change into a red bucket. It changed my whole night! I walked into Albertson's beaming. Waving to strangers, whistling Christmas carols, helping people reach things on high shelves! I was the epitome of Christmas Cheer! And I am planning on keeping it that way. So- scrooges beware!


Anonymous said...

What a great experince. It cheered me up to read it, not that I was down, but it made me happier:)

Karlenn said...

Good for you, Patters. I'm one of those who ducks her head! If I had any to spare, I'd give it!! I used to love doing that. But times have changed! I hope you have fun with your Christmas card extravaganza today!!

johnandjana said...

Good for you Patty! I'm sure you made everyones day. We all need to get more in that Christmas spirit. I know I do.