There are so many little Christmas stories I could tell, so many heartwarming experiences to share.
However, the one that stands out for me (probably because it was the first real drama I ever watched my parents deal with) happened a very long time ago.
On Christmas Day, my mom presented a special gift to the family. She had saved and bought tickets for all of us to see “Mutiny on the Bounty” (the original production – that’s how long ago this was!).
Wrapped up in the tickets were three, $100 bills, as well, to pay for the trip to town, dinner and a bit of Christmas shopping.
It was so exciting and this was the first time I ever saw a hundred dollar bill – pretty impressive for a 10-year old.
The show was in January, and after our initial surprise and excitement, we mostly forgot about it until the evening of the show.
We dressed in our very best clothes – going to the big city was a special treat – and set out on the adventure.
When we got to the theatre and the usher asked for tickets, my mother could not find them – they had completely disappeared from her purse.
After our journey to get there and all the excitement about the show, it was going to be an extreme disappointment not to be able to see it. But, my mother was determined and she took the usher aside to give him the seat numbers and suggest that those five seats would be empty because they were our seats.
Sure enough, the seats were vacant so, thanks to mom’s excellent memory, we got to see the epic production.
When we got home and after a thorough search of the house, we found the charred remains of the tickets and the hundred dollar bills in the ashes of the fireplace.
I guess they had been gathered up with everything else and burned.
The tickets were in pieces and only one corner of one hundred dollar bill was left in the Christmas wrapping. And, to our great entertainment over the years, mom and dad were never able to say those famous parental words of rebuke “we don’t have money to burn, you know!”