Wednesday, December 21, 2011


I am living in sunny warm Florida now but there was a time when I was a child that I lived in a small town in New York where we had lots of snow in the winter.   This picture is just how I remember the snow, perfectly smooth on the surface.  
No one had walked through here since the snow had fallen and I would look back and see that my footprints in the snow were the first.    I found it to be a little adventurous as if I were a trailbreaker, walking where no one had walked before.   Of course this was not true but at that young age it is fun to pretend.   Then one day I had my friend Artie with me.  At this time in my life I was a teenager and Artie was in the same grade as me.   It had snowed the night before and Artie and I were walking across the unbroken snow and chatting as we went.   Then off in the distance about 75 feet ahead of us there was a single dollar bill lying on top of the snow.    It was easy to spot because it was green side up (the back side).   
How it got there I have no idea.   There was absolutely no snow on it and so it must have blown to that spot on the wind.   Since it had snowed the night before the dollar bill could not have been there very long.    And where could it have blown from?   As we walked and talked I could tell that Artie had not spotted that green-back dollar bill lying so nicely on the snow.   Then I started feeling an emotion, greed.   I wanted that dollar bill.   If I made a break for it and ran, Artie would have seen what I was running for and Artie could run a lot faster than me and he would overtake me and pass me as he got to the dollar bill first.    I would have to wait until we were close enough so that there wouldn't be enough time for him to catch up and overtake me.   I was nervous.   What if he spotted the dollar bill?   We kept walking and I kept getting more nervous as greed raged within me.   We kept getting closer and I decided to wait no longer but we were close enough for Artie to beat me to it.   I turned to Artie and pushed him and as he fell sideways into the snow I raced to the bill and clutched it in my greedy little fist.   Artie was perplexed.   What was wrong?   Why had I pushed him down in the snow?   The snow had gone down the front of his coat.   The greed left me and now I filled with guilt about being so greedy.  As he stood there pulling handfuls of snow from the inside of his coat I told him why I had acted the way that I had and to make up for it, I told him that I would split the dollar bill with him.   And so off to the soda shop we went.  
This was a time when an ice cream soda was 25 cents.   We each had an ice cream soda and then spent the remaining 25 cents each on candy.   What a sugary feast that day turned out to be.  
I learned a lesson that day about the evils of greed and how it can make you turn on even your best friend.   I also got a strong lesson on how bad guilt can make you feel.   But I tried to atone for it all by splitting my windfall of good fortune with my best friend and all turned out well in the end.   Sometimes we may not realize when life is teaching us one of her lessons.   I learned mine well.   And I also tried to be good because after all Christmas is coming and we all know that Santa has his list of boys and girls.   What a wonderful legend for the very young children who believe the story of Santa with all their heart.  An exciting time for the little children.   
I invite any one to leave their story of a life's lesson in the comment section at the bottom of the blog.   Have a nice day and an even better holiday season whatever your religious convictions may be.     Lew

No comments: