Saturday, December 3, 2011

Miracles on 777 Street

Christmas reminds people of miracles, of hope, and the possibility of goodness that lies within each of us. The light displays twinkle on the lamp posts, the houses, the trees and the shopping malls. Churches become full again and people gather together to celebrate the bond of being in this dream and struggle we call life.

I used to walk the streets in the early morning hours during this season. The air was crisp and cold enough to chap every exposed layer of skin. It was a safe collection of neighborhoods, full of mostly "blue bloods," successful business owners and retirees who were just grateful to get their papers on time and placed in the right spots. I was never scared, even though a twenty something young lady might be by herself in the dark, with nothing but silent stars and colorful displays of Christmas lights left on overnight.

But every season it was the same. I'd get phone calls, extra tips, plates of homemade cookies and cards of gratitude from people who only knew me by my name and my work ethic. In a box those cards still exist, waiting for the right moment to be reopened and reread. Despite the fact that I was only doing this "job" for extra money to pay off my car lease and some of the debt I incurred as an undergraduate student, it became a little something extra. A source of simple joy and unlikely friendship-the kind that's harder to notice as the gray hair and the wrinkles become more prevalent.

Every so often, I still drive down those streets, breathe in the clean, cold air, and see the Christmas lights dancing beneath a dark blanket, sprinkled with reminders of what could be. It was a time in my life that was filled with small miracles that I'll always be fond of. An example of what it really means to have given, received and achieved success; a gesture or two of private recognition for dreaming the dream with conviction, determination, welcoming warmth and spunk. No Oscars, red carpet premieres, or literary Nobel Prizes. Just a group of neighbors saying thanks for making the journey a little bit easier.

No comments:

Post a Comment