Since this is the season for relating miracles.
I've had something of a bad week. Not only was I trying to ward off a cold, but the sort of job I'm doing now meant that, more often than usual, I was being hammered with he waste dump which our people seem bound and determined to turn Christmas into. Hour upon hour of authorizing credit card protection plans for people who, more often than not, were all to anxious to rush to the shopping mall. The closer it got to Christmas the more rudeness I seemed to encounter (as well as every possible spelling of Ashley, Caitlyn, Kelly and similar names).
I reached my bottom Tuesday night when I partook of a Christmas ritual and watched the 1971 animated version of "A Christmas Carol" (directed by Richard Williams and produced by Chuck Jones). I heard the words of the Ghost of Christmas Present and, for the first time in my life, I was actually crying.
Wednesday. Same routine, just more of it.
And then God tossed me one of His occasional bones in the form of Patricia.
Every so often I'll get a call from a potential customer who is in a mood to chat. These are invariably from folks my age (or older) and they have something they wish to relate.
Patricia was one of these people. Rather than tersely demanding action in regards to her new credit card she was blessing me with "Merry Christmas" and inquiring as to how my holiday was going. She possessed an extremely friendly voice, a cheerful nature and a genuine bell-tone like laugh (which appeared often). She and I had never met . . . would in all probability never see each other or speak again . . . but we immediately became close and dear friends and chatted. She offered suggestions on what I should get Denise for Christmas, and I asked her how her tree was decorated.
During the course of the conversation I learned she had been a widow for several years. I offered commiserations (and, if the call had not been monitored by the Company, I would've commented on how her husband probably died with a smile on his face). But Patricia wasn't sad or regretful, and I realized that this person would never lack for companionship or genuine affection.
Regrettably . . . very regrettably . . . the call had to come to an end. And no, I wasn't able to sell her the credit card protection program. But it was of no consequence. Paychecks . . . W2 statements . . . what of it? The Ghost of Christmas Present had passed his torch over me, and I had received some of what it offered. God had restored to me what I thought I had lost, and what I realized I would never utterly lose.
God rest ye merry, Gentlemen.