Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Best Christmas Ever!!
Merry Christmas Blogettes! May our blog find you and yours happy and healthy this holiday season. We are experiencing quite a different Christmas than years past. It is about 80 degrees and raining off and on. Such weather makes it hard to distinguish Christmas from any other day here in Zambia. However, this Christmas we had the honor and privilege to experience the true meaning of Christmas. Last weekend, Rianne, Deryn and Trevor participated in a gift wrapping party at the Ambassador's residence. The Marines had collected presents for their "Toys for Tots" program. On Christmas Eve, Beth and the kids accompanied the Marines to deliver the toys to Lusaka's poorest Compounds. I had the misfortune of having to go into work so I truly missed out. Fortunately, Beth snapped some great pictures and I could tell from the accounts given by the kids of their experience that they got it!
Beth indicated there were several moments where she had to look away to try and keep her composure, especially when the Compound children began singing "The Good Lord Loves Us". A few times she looked up and saw Deryn with tears in her eyes as she talked with the children and held some of the smaller ones. Another classic moment was when all the presents had been passed out and there was a little girl in the front about Trevor's age who was holding a younger sibling. She did not have a present. Even her sibling who she was holding had received a present. The girl went over to the gentleman who had the list of all the names of kids and looked to see if her name was on it only to be told it was not. She quietly walked back over to where she was without a word. The Marines scrambled around and found her a gift. They gave it to her and she thanked the Marine. She then turned around and gave the gift to her brother who was standing behind her. Even now, while I'm typing this, I can feel the lump building in my throat and my eyes welling up. It was the most unselfish act and really epitomizes what Christmas is all about. As the Mastercard commercial states: Move to Africa $50,000 - 1st class Safari and Victoria Falls $5000 - the look in your children's eyes when they actually see how fortunate they are - PRICELESS!
Merry Christmas to All and to All a Good night!