We are non-commercial, all volunteer and supported by our readers. Please help sustain the Dew by making a donation.
You learn a lot and it’s fun to read Christmas card messages
One of the joys of the holiday season is finding out about what your friends have been up to in the past year through their Christmas cards.
On Christmas Day, I spent about three hours just leaning back in a chair, and very deliberately going through the cards that friends had sent along. Many of them include messages, long and short, shedding more light on their activities.
Some come only in card form. But even that is a delight, since the years are adding up for all of us, and just hearing from old friends, and knowing that they are here, always cheers us. Of course, the flip side is that in a few days after Christmas we will get returned two or three cards from distant friends we sent cards to, who have either moved and we need to change their address, or they have “moved on,” and we need to eliminate them from our list. The second part saddens you.
Yes, some write long, long letters. Today these might even arrive via e-mail, being quickly sent, and saving our friends postage. If you send out a lot of cards, that postage can add up while Internet communications works well!
Going through the comments and letters in the arriving cards, you learn all sorts of items. Some people now are also grandparents, and of course and as it should be, they like to tell about the accomplishments of both their children, or their grand (and some great) children.
That aspect makes us proud: the accomplishment of our friends’ children. Many of them are really sharp kids (or so their grandparents say), doing so much, and seeming to really enjoy themselves. We are proud, even those we don’t know them closely or at all.
So we hear of people graduating from college or becoming a doctor, or of new births or new careers and even of ailments. “Still in there after battling cancer,” one said, and we were relieved to hear of this person’s progress.
Since much of our mail comes from the senior set, we find that many of them find time to travel, to all sort of exotic places. One couple we know in England was taking an Asian cruise, only to find that all four of the ship’s engines conked out. There they were in what they call 33 degree (C) weather (about 100 degrees F) without any air conditioning. And this lasted several days, with finally one engine and then another one getting partially restarted at sea, before they slowly steamed for an unexpected port. They were given a complimentary stay at a top hotel, and provided tickets for another cruise. What an adventure!
Another couple took a cruise with their extended family around New England and to Canada, aboard a ship named for their family. It made it sound like so much fun we wished we had been with them.
Opening Christmas cards is not like talking on the phone, up close and really personal. Yet going leisurely through the cards gives us a certain pleasure. It’s a part of Christmas we always look forward to each year.
* * *
One more holiday story: a Christmas Party invitation one person got gave the time and place, then added: “Adult admission: one festive beverage; child admission: $700.” Guess how many children showed up?
- Image: Provided by author.
Worthy of Comment
Also on the Dew
A situation vexing Newton County citizens for years erupted on metro Atlanta airwaves this week when television station 11 Alive aired stories of an ongoing investigation into payments made to county attorney Tommy Craig. Unanimously reappointed this month by the Board of Commissioners amid a public outcry of opposition, Craig was paid a reported $1.1 million by the county in 2014. He was also the center of much controversy last year when citizens questioned the reported $21.6 million spent to date on a reservoir project championed and managed by Craig. Still not permitted by the state, the reservoir may not Read on →
I read recently that “serendipity” is looking in a haystack for a needle and discovering the farmer’s daughter. It would truly be a lucky boy who would find such a treasure in a haystack when he was just looking for his car keys. That’s the way I felt this morning after awakening from a delightful dream in which I had finally been awarded my PhD in ancient languages. The rub was that I have never sought such a distinction. In addition, no one in the dream had ever heard of any of the languages that I had been studying. It was all lit Read on →
The 31st Chinese Export Commodities Fair (Spring) was held from 15 April to 15 May 1972, and most of the foreign traders attended for the whole month. While the main purpose of the Fair was for China to exhibit and sell its products to the western world, buyers from the Beijing Government’s import agencies attended to negotiate the purchase of raw materials, metals, minerals and other commodities from the west, hopefully paying with Chinese goods. China saw itself as a potential exporter of machinery and equipment, automobiles and other manufactured goods. In reality most of what was on display at the F Read on →
My friend Tom says most, if not all, great writers are fractured individuals. I hope he’s wrong about that; I’ve always been a happy, well-adjusted guy. I plan to achieve Great Writer status one day and would hate to think lack of a tortured soul, along with precious little talent, will prevent such dreams. The only thing even remotely dark about me is my middle name. If I had been a girl, none of this would have happened. I would have been Betty Louise. At least that’s what my mother said. The Mike part of my name originated with an old Army Read on →