It's done! It's over! The hustle and bustle; the second guessing and the fine tuning of the menu. Now we can all sit back. Take it all in and enjoy the coming hours in whatever fashion that has become our tradition. That is, if you have not left anything to the bitter end, like gift wrapping for instance. And of course, right to the end, I was reminded of how fortunate of a life I have. In my final dash to pick up some last minute items, a solitary figure sat on the ice cold ground in front of a local shopping mall. He was rhythmically strumming his guitar to sheet music which lay in front of him and singing, with a very fine voice, Christmas Carols. In front of him, a red box to collect whatever offering passersby could spare. I went in the store and as quickly as possible, grabbed the last of my necessaries and exited along the outside of this man so I could intentionally pass in front of him. I stopped and dropped in some folding money alongside the cold coins that sat at the bottom of his box. I was rewarded with a wide toothed grin and a thank you. As I walked away, he continued to sing, in tune and with grace.
To me, this man was not begging. He was earning what little people paid to hear him sing, if only for a few brief moments. I'm quite pissed at myself right now because, although I did have the time, I did not stop to talk with this fellow. Yes, I may have dropped in some cash, but I could have been more charitable and found out what his story was instead of trying to guess while I journeyed home. On my way home, my brain ran crazy with questions as to what could this man, at this late moment be trying to accomplish that he was not able to do earlier. Or perhaps that was just me trying to appease myself for not stepping up to the plate. In my mind and in my heart, I have failed.
Now, as I sit and reflect of the things that I could have done, it does me no good. The moment was there, and I blew it. To me, the money that I dropped in his box, is meaningless. To this man, later on it may have been helpful toward whatever it was he was trying to accomplish. But I forgot a very valuable lesson. That this man , this fellow human being, was humbling himself at this special time of the year to make a little Christmas for himself and perhaps others in his life. I will never know. Although I never wish to ever have to encounter this kind of situation again, I know I will. Maybe there is hope that the next time, I will slow down a little and get it right.
And now, tonight as we get in our comfy's and settle in to enjoy the Christmastide with our families and friends, I do not want to forget my blogger friends out there. We all come from different backgrounds and celebrate Christmas in many ways. Some of us may have had to tighten our belts a little and be grateful for our circumstances such as they are. In true Christmas Spirit, we provide merriment regardless of those circumstances and have the memories in our hearts and photo albums as proof. Tonight I am taking this time to write this little blurb as not only a reminder to myself for my earlier transgression, but also to remember all of you.
From Mr. Beaks, Mr. Belvedere, (my Budgie boys) and myself, we would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas. May you all enjoy a safe and happy holiday season filled with many happy and treasured memories. Wherever you are and whatever your traditions. Keep the Spirit of Christmas forever in your hearts and remember this, “There, but for the Grace of God, go I”