As we move closer to the time when many of us commemorate the birth of a certain child in a Bethlehem manger roughly 20 centuries ago, it is bemusing to me to observe how we react to this holy day.
For some, there is the orgy of present buying for all and sundry. I am as guilty of this, I'm afraid, as anyone else. We are an acquisitive people.
One of my cherished memories of Christmas took place two years ago, when we asked our youngest son, who was then four, what he wanted for Christmas. He was quite certain what he wanted. It was a green striped crayon of Blues Clues fame.
A crayon. A special crayon, granted, but a crayon nevertheless. Nothing would substitute for this green striped crayon, and my wife spent a lot of time cruising the toy sections of various stores until she found one. On Christmas morning he was very pleased. Santa had delivered, as promised. Trust was retained. (He received more than the crayon of course.)
As he grows he will become more acquisitive. He already has, although he's still quite restrained. He's just beginning to understand there's loot in them there hills. But I will always remember the Christmas when the green striped crayon was his heart's desire.