Holiday cheer noticed

Posted: Tuesday, December 28, 2010

"What I do, you cannot do; but what you do, I cannot do. The needs are great and none of us ever do great things. But we can do small things with great love, and together we can do something wonderful." -- Mother Teresa

Running errands on Dec. 16, I entered First National Bank in Kenai and began filling out a deposit slip. I admired a large table of Christmas foods which the bank had provided in the middle of the lobby. Another customer, filling out her papers across from me, was approached by her young daughter, about 6.

"Mommy, can I have some of that food?" she asked.

"Give me just a minute and we'll see," said Mom as she continued with her banking task. The daughter quietly waited by her mother, then followed her to the teller.

While Mom was transacting her business, little "Patience" amused herself by jumping from rug to rug, like a hopscotch player, and then leaping from the last rug to an overstuffed chair to the right of the teller line. I enjoyed her style of "waiting" for her mother. After finishing her banking, Mom and Patience approached the festive food table ...

Then, off to the post office for me, where I took my place in the expected line of Christmas mailers. Ahead of me in line were two strangers, unknown to me and to each other. One was a lady holding three or four packages, the top one not properly wrapped for shipping, but just for placing under a Christmas tree.

"Are those packages heavy? Do you want me to put them up there on the counter for you?" asked the second stranger ahead of me, a man probably in his 60s, with a salt-and-pepper beard.

"Oh, these are light," responded the lady, "but thank you."

I listened to other pleasant conversation among the people in line until Cliff from behind the counter called out for all those who were only waiting to pick up packages. The stranger with the peppered beard stepped forward along with several others with pink package slips.

A woman with short blonde hair deferred to the peppered-bearded stranger that he was before her and should get served first.

"Oh no. You go right ahead," he politely insisted. She smiled and thanked him.

The package-holding customer finally reached her turn at the counter. I overheard her tell the post office worker that the parcel not-properly-wrapped-for-mailing was for one of the post office employees ...

Thank you to all the players in this unrehearsed showcase of Christmas spirit in Kenai. Seeing the fruits of good parenting, and the kind thoughtfulness of strangers was a great Christmas gift to me.

Rosalind Foster, Kenai

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