Yearn­ing for an old-fash­ioned Christ­mas

The Compass - - EDITORIAL - Keith Young writes from Mount Pearl

Those were the sim­ple days. The first Christ­mas that I re­mem­ber, Santa gave me a toy car. It was ad­vanced for 1949 be­cause it had a door that opened and the driver ap­peared on a seat at­tached to the door. That evening I was sent to bed early as my aunt and un­cle ar­rived at our home at 39 Prince of Wales St. I was cry­ing, of course, as a three- or four-year-old would.

We would drive out to the Sana­to­rium to see the Christ­mas lights. It was the only show in town in the good old days. Then, later on, Santa would leave us a fire truck. We were told that was all we were go­ing to get be­cause Santa Claus men­tioned that it was very ex­pen­sive.

An­other year we got a budgie bird. I re­mem­ber com­ing down the stairs and won­der­ing what was un­derneath the blan­ket. We all nearly scared it to death.

Christ­mas stock­ings in those days were just an old sock stuffed with an orange, ap­ple, grapes, and a ba­nana, if you were for­tu­nate. Ba­nanas were ex­pen­sive, not like to­day. The sock would be con­demned to­day as be­ing un­san­i­tary by our health-care pro­fes­sion­als. But they were all lovingly cleaned ev­ery week by our moth­ers.

Then there was Tippy, our pet named for his white legs and black paws, and my first record player and lots of 45s that my brother gave me that Christ­mas. Very dif­fer­ent from to­day, when kids are scream­ing for cell­phones and the lat­est Xbox.

One mem­ory that won’t leave me was meet­ing a grand­fa­ther in a lo­cal store near Christ­mas. He was pric­ing a video game for his grand­son. If you had a heart you could weep for him when he found out that the prices started at $69.

So­ci­ety has come a long way, they say. Yes it has! In­ter­net crooks, tele­mar­keters tor­ment­ing you, and cus­tomer ser­vice dif­fi­cult to get, es­pe­cially if you have to phone some­one for it. Scams that suck you in to get you to visit busi­nesses where the truth is re­vealed.

Bring me back to the good old days, please - at least the best parts of them.

Merry Christ­mas to all!

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