Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Chinese Christmas

I know that I rant quite a bit in my blog and usually it is about the negatives to my job. However...occationally, I do encounter people that make my shift a lot easier through their kindness.

One such example happened the other night...

It was another stressful pre-holiday night with mostly tyrant shopper despritely trying to get as many bargains as possible.

A gentleman (probably in his late 60's) walks through my line with a teenager by his side. Like something out of a cheesy christmas Lifetime movie, his cheer was contagious and instant put me at ease.

"Hello there dear. Your going to be seeing quite a bit tonight. Hope you don't mind!"

He later went on to explain that he had 8 granddaughters. Years before, he realized that everyone was spending too much money on gifts for the holidays so he started a tradition where each of the grandchildren bought a gift for under $15. Then on Christmas Eve, they all draw numbers to figure out who gets what gift. He called it "Our Chinese Christmas".

His story was glowing after seeing and hearing all the whining about everyone elses problems.

"Honey, I hate to bother you, but do you mind double bagging her stuff? I got a bunch of nosy women in my house. They won't make it til' tomorrow if the peak!"

Laughing about the bag within a bag within another bag, I gave him his change and set him on his way.

Minutes later, the gentleman returns, another teenager by his side. smiling as if this was the most fun they'd had ever.

"Howdy again! This is granddaughter #2! Don't hint at what #1 got cause they are all nosy."

This continued all the way to #8. By this point, I looked forward to seeing this man and his family. They seemed to generally understand the idea behind the holidays and their cheer was starting to rub off on me.

Finally, the whole crew walks through my line where the man proclaims with the enthusiasm of a child.

"Everyone make sure you thank this young lady! She has been the most help an old man could ask for. Sweetie, I'd like to introduce you to my soulmate, this is my wife. You and her have a lot in common, you know. You both have the patience of a god."

The sea of grandchildren part to reveal the most classy lady I've ever seen. The lines framing her face speak of only laughter and wisedom beyond my comprehension.

Even after clocking out or the night...this family's presence made an impression on me. I hope they had the best Chinese Christmas of all time. I also hope that they grandchildren let this tradition continue through the next generation.

It gave me hope, something there is just too little of.


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