Everyone Took Sick but Me–Part 4

This is a continuation of our blog that has excerpted some Christmas memories from Robert Ruark’s classic book The Old Man and the Boy…

In addition to all the expeditions, it was a lot of fun for us kids just prowling the ten cent stores to buy notable gifts for grown-ups. And it was a lot of fun waiting for Santa Claus to bring you something you been hammering at the family about for six months, and then after Christmas when you were still free from schooling you could really concentrate on the loot you found under the tree.

But I suppose everybody has one little particular chunk of time he wishes he could get back and live all over again. The one fine Christmas I remember best and most lovingly was when whooping cough showed up at all the schools–it was what they call an epidemic. The epidemic struck about two weeks before the Christmas holiday started. There wasn’t a thing to do but shut up shop and let the diseases run their course. By the time the race was run it would be so close to Christmas that there wasn’t any use in starting back classes all over again, just for a few days. So they locked off school for nearly a month.

I tried real hard to forget this unforeseen gap in my clean in my keen pursuit of such things as Latin in geometry but it so happened I had already enjoyed hooping cough and two counts of measles and I was salted. Maybe the other people were sick, but not me. I felt just fine.

Shotgun Shells imagesCARVUEMKI remember it was early on that Christmas Eve when he asked me what I hoped I might find under the tree the next day. I didn’t stop to think before I spoke, “Nothing I can think of, I already got my Christmas present when they let school out a couple weeks early. Except maybe I need some more shotgun shells for next week. I’m about shot out.”

The old man as usual tried to cram a little culture down me on top of the ham and the turkey and the sage dressing but I don’t think I really absorbed much. I remember, after he asked me if I gotten everything I wanted, he hit me with the stuff of a Christmas Carol and other classics, but got nowhere because the Messer Scrooge, and Cratchit, tiny Tim and all the others were really not living in my league…