The holidays. A time filled with music, joy, shopping, drinking, eating, giving, receiving, and reminders… Ah, yes reminders. Little memory triggers that may occur on a daily basis during the rest of the year, but for some unknown reason hold a special power in November and December.
Some very special triggers are annual. No other time. Some are the best. Some are the worst. And some are like Pumpkin Spice Latte at Starbucks. I don’t mean to judge but what the hell is all the hoopla about this passion for chemically induced seasonal flavor. I don’t get it… well actually I do…but I am NOT a follower of the pumpkin spice stampede. But I understand the passion and love for some if not all things Thanksgiving and Christmas.
First is the turkey. I eat turkey nearly every week. but the roasting and the smells that fill the house are usually seasonal. I don’t know why.. probably because it takes a family to consume a bird. Probably because I can’t microwave a 15 pound bird. Probably because I can’t fit the turkey roaster in the dishwasher. But for me is goes one step beyond the meal.
It is the ritual of taking the carcass, the boiling and bone picking and the making of the best soup I ever tasted. Thanks Mom, you really hated to cook… but you really loved to pinch pennies. There are many good things that came from your frugality. This holiday gem is the best for me.
There is no carcass this year. It’s ok. I relish in the memory.
Second, the lights. I love the lights. During my adult life I have only done the “full-Griswold” once. My first year of marriage. Every nook and cranny. The roof and house lines… and though I don’t do that anymore… I do travel the streets in search of the best. And how can I not. I am from Kansas City. That is all I need to say for those of you from Kansas City understand that the “Paris of the Plains” is the home of the greatest shopping center Christmas light display in the world. I won’t argue with you. I will just say that the Country Club Plaza has no equal in my little holiday mind. Just trust me when I say… pictures do not do the Plaza justice.. I am so thankful it is a part of my memory bank.
I missed the lighting again this year. It’s ok. I so enjoy the memory.
So many pleasant memories.
As I age I find that memories are enough. I don’t want to live yesterday again… I just want to smile because I was a part of it.
And of course there are the moments that give me pause. Because now my life includes tragic and sad moments. Things from yesterday that I cannot change, things I have accepted, but things which will cause me to cry out.
Though I am not a big shopper for the holidays. I am aware that others may be. And I do have 5 dogs and 3 cats. And they require constant spoiling. So I do go shopping. I do not like to go shopping. But my animals are not sensitive to the holidays. They are sensitive to feeding times and play times. So shop I must. And I always grab a cart when I shop for the critters. I have to. I will just grab an armful and a hand basket when I shop for me. But when it comes to the kids, well it requires the cartage of bags and boxes of some weight.
Let me introduce you to my little friend–
We met in the parking lot. Discarded like an unwanted animal. Left to find its way home, lest some caring patron or hired gun would come searching and return it to the home for wanted grocery carts. This cart had no business being in this place at this time. So I grabbed it. I had to. Those of you who have followed my irregular blog my understand why.
You can get a refresher here …………
So I decided it was time to renew the purpose and mission of this 4-wheeler. Off we went. Past the holiday displays… the racks of candy, cookies, toys, impulse “as-seen-on-TV” displays…. wait is that a Chia Head… wow, how cool is that.
Stop renewed focus… don’t get sidetracked. All of the fun, meaningless stuff that Michelle loved. Seriously, a brilliant woman with a penchant for all things tacky. (that could be why she married me). Remember the dogs and cats. On to the pet food aisle.
Tasty treasures, Meow Mix, Rawhides, Chunky beef stew.. filling the cart. Grateful to have one. Then to the self check-out aisle. Staying focused. No other things to buy. Get to the vehicle and unload. Hurry. Hurry. I could feel it… I had to hurry.
Open the trunk… Unload. Return Cart.
Damnit. Damnit……… I actually cried it out loud in the store parking lot.
I was a miserable, selfish, sh!##y husband. Damnit.
I returned the cart to its home… And I went home.
I wish I had a turkey carcass and trip planned to Kansas City.
I don’t but I am now at peace. Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night.