The Week After

WHO DAT 13-0 ??????????????????

When you are a child, the only way you know that you are living in poverty is to meet someone that is not. The same applies to isolation. I had never had a neighbor except my grandparents that did not live at least one mile away. To me it seemed normal not to see someone my age or size except on Sunday at church.

I said the above to say this. For the next several days, I discussed the Christmas parade only with my dog and a passing chicken. Until the next major event, it had stayed in the center of every thought I had. Maybe that is why it is still so clear after all these years.

Yes, I day dreamed of every thing I had seen that magical night. I could see the band with the young man standing out front with his huge fussy hat and black stick leading the marching band.

After a couple of days, I had actually found a brown grocery sack and placed on my head. Then I located a piece of broken broom handle and started to make-believe that I was that fellow and that the whole parade was behind me. I must have looked a site marching through the cow piles around the barn.

One afternoon as I sat on the front porch staring at the gravel road that ran in front of our house, recollecting that it had been two days since any one had come by. My mother came to the door and interrupted my thoughts. Little did I know that what she was about to say would start me on another journey to the next major event of my short life.

“Hurry, come in her right now,”

Not knowing what to expect I jumped up and found her setting by the radio. I only knew of one family at the time that had a television. There on the radio was Santa talking. He was announcing that he would be at the Sears Catalogue Store the following Thursday on the square in Kosciusko.

I was in shock hearing Santa’s voice. The closes I had gotten to him was seeing him on the float in the parade.

I stood with my mouth hanging open trying to catch and remember ever word.

When Santa turned the mike back to the announcer, my mother said something I will never forget.

“You know your granddaddy goes to town every other Thursday. Maybe we can ride in with him and see Santa up close. He may even let you set in his lap.”

Hearing the world was ending and I was on your way to heaven could not have been as sweet of words to my four-year old ears.

For the first time in my life, I understood the word heart attack. I was so excited that I thought I was on the verge of having one.

My next thought was how many times I would have to count to ten before that wonderful Thursday would be here.

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