#5 – 25 Days of Christmas: Grandma Died This Christmas Eve

And it’s really a funny story.

See, Grandma and Grandpa came over my house for Christmas Eve. It’s kind of a family tradition. We have a big dinner and then have dessert as we talk about random family things (like skinning animals and playing the Wii). The night usually concludes with us all sitting around avoiding more conversation by watching TV. The program is usually boring, but it’s better than admitting we’re all family by forcing small talk. Then everyone leaves and we avoid each other till next Christmas.

Well, this year grandma revealed that she has been having a more than healthy love for rum. Being that this was her new hobby, she very much enjoyed are quite rum tasting eggnog. To be honest, I’v never seen someone put back this much eggnog. She seemed to be doing pretty well considering how she is a frail woman of the ripe age of 139 and 7 months, but as pretty much all of us can attest to the situation quicklywent from fun to awful. Soon grandma was singing Lady GaGa (it was adorable till she started to disrobe) and plucking fictional feathers from my brothers neatly groomed facial hair.

The family took a rather loud vote (it’s ok, grandma can’t hear very well) and decided it was best to send her on her packing, much to the dismay of grandpa. I suppose he was the sacrificial lamb in the situation. As we decided to corner grandma we suddenly realized she had vanished from the house. It wasn’t long before we got a call from the local hospital.

Apparently grandma had wondered onto an oddly busy street and was struck by a vehicle. Obviously upset,we all stayed up and milled about the living room with eyes fixed on the floor. This continued until we heard a sound from the roof. Before we knew it there was a fat man in a red suit with a thick white beard and a satchel thrown over his shoulder standing before us. His red suit was torn around his right thigh and his left shoulder. His beard had some red  spots in it and he had the eyes of a man who was late to an important meeting.

After several moments of us all looking at one another in disbelief, the man in red fell to his knees and told us about how he was taking a short cut through a town, flying lower than he usually would, when he hit an old woman who was humming some 1940s pop gem. She easily was tossed 100 feet because of the impact. When the man in red, who we finally realized was Santa and not the guy from Jurassic Park, told us about how he ran to see if he could help the poor hag he quickly realized that there was grey matter on the pavement and there was to be no miracles on this evening. He told us how he ditched the body in a flood basin and covered it with soot from his bag of coal. See, he had a lot of places to be and he couldn’t possibly deal with the authorities if he wanted to make all of his appointments.

After a little time in a huddle the family decided to let the morbidly obese guy go about his errands. His prior engagements seemed a lot more fun than what we all were doing. Why make someone else shuffle around in our living room when they could be flying in the sky with toys and a belly full of baked goods. We only asked that he fly higher and not to take short cuts this time. This is when grandpa told him where his sister lived and that she’s really been a bad person this year. Santa put his gloved hand to my grandpas lips and told that he was on it. It sounded cryptic, but I didn’t really give it a second thought. My great aunt can be a great pain in the ass sometimes.

The next day, the abscence of grandma didn’t seem to hamper anyone’s holiday cheer. In fact grandpa was already drinking some beer and watching football. There was a report from my brother that he saw him playing and cards and drinking more beer with cousin Belle.

This seemed odd considering that grandpa hates cousin Belle. She looks like a painted up whore. A prostitute! he would bark. Most of the family ignored his hatred for Belle. She was a good kid. She’d be graduating high school this year and grandpa just could never get into or over what young people do to have fun. Needless to say though, they seemed to had patched up their generational gap quite well at the moment.

Even weirder than granpa and Belle playing crads was this other thing I haven’t told anyone in my family about. As Santa was packing up his things, the toys in the sacks, correctly buckeling the elves into place and laying out the correct food for each of the reindeers he walked over to my grandpa. They seemed to have a fairly lengthy private conversation. Or a lenghty conversation when you think of a kitchen that doesn’t provide much privacy at allow. I guess it got the job done since I wasn’t able to pick up on what the main point of the conversation was. But it became really clear when I saw my grandpa take out is wallet and seemed to hand Santa sever large bills. Santa then clicked his heels and was up through the chimney again.

We eveentually found grandma’s body. It had still been in the flood basin, and as soon as the drifts of the white stuff began to melt her body turned up. It was horrific. We quickly clame to the conclusion that we would be using a  cl0sed casket for her funeral. So we set about plans and made all the arraignments and 4 days later her funeral would took place.

Not too many people showed. Loved ones defininately. Some people from her church stopped by. Some friends and family of grandpas came as well.

As the showing was ready to be closed down there was one visitor waiting for his turn to speak to the empty vessell. It was Santa Claus. So he got on one knee by the casket, placed a red rose on the wood box and begain to say a prayer:Look, I’m so sorry that things had to be like this. I never wanted to hurt you let alone kill you. You just ran that red and I didn’t have time to stop. I’m sorry you’re dead, but there’s nothing I can do to go back in the past and somehow make the events that unfolded stay folded. I can’t do that. So I’m sorry for that too.

After he was done emptying out his emotion on a box he stood up and went on with his dady. It was nice for him to come by. I know that it get’s busy around the holidays and I know when you’re the big symbol of them it’s even harder for you to sneak away and be somewhere else. So for him to show was a pretty nice gesture.

As for grandpa, he seems like the happiest guy in the world right now. I was supposed to go and play some checkers with him sometime next week but thought better of it. I’ll be happy to play with him as long as it’s not the holidays.

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