October 31, 2011

Halloween had finally arrived. Amy had been dreading this day all week and it would all be over in less than twenty-four hours. The stores would change from Halloween costumes, candy and decorations to Christmas lights, trees and wrapping paper. The music would change too, playing the carols from Nat King Cole, Mariah Carey and Frank Sinatra. She wondered if it was too soon to get out her own Christmas music.


Amy usually looked forward to Christmas, but this year was going to be exceptionally difficult. Her grandpa had passed away this past August, and they’d just begun forming a closer relationship. Being apart of a big family (there would soon be about seventy of them when they all got together), seeing each other this year was going to be an emotional time for all of them. Grandpa had always been the spiritual rock of the family, the one who prayed before the big meal two weeks before Christmas. Now, Grandma was going through treatments for thyroid cancer. It was going to be hard enough without him there; they needed Grandma to be there this year especially.


Wiping away the tears, Amy tried to focus on the article she was writing. There had been a huge snowstorm in the States, and even some heavy snow in Newfoundland. She guessed the snow had made her think of Christmas… They kind of went together when you were a Canadian. Tons of people were without power for Trick-or-Treating tonight in the States, but it didn’t seem to matter to Amy.


Josh came over and put a hand on her shoulder. She looked up, smiling through the tears. He was always there when she needed him. She reached up and put a hand on his. “Thanks,” she managed.


“Thinking about your grandpa?” he asked, intertwining his fingers with hers.


“Yeah. All this snow in the States is making me think of Christmas, and how he’s not gonna be there.”


“Remembrance Day is going to be even harder,” Josh sympathized.


“I got a poppy this weekend,” Amy nodded. In the months before he died, she had been working with Grandpa on his memoirs from WW2. “I usually call him on November 11 and talk about the services he participated in. I guess I’ll be spending the day reading his memoirs and calling Grandma.”


“Everything okay?” Adam looked up from his desk, after hanging up the phone.


“Yeah,” Amy squeezed Josh’s hand before letting go. “Just writing about the storm in the States.”

“I am so not ready for winter,” Adam shook his head. “I was just talking to my cousin in London. There are still protests going on in front of St. Paul’s Cathedral. The dean of the church resigned today.”


“Wow, these Occupy protests are getting out of hand,” Josh noted as he walked back to his desk. “I’m still working on an article about Australia’s Qantas Airways resuming flights. Over 100,000 passengers were impacted this weekend because of a union battle.”


“I’m just happy to be writing a weather-related story today,” Amy put in. “After writing about Libya for so long, it’s nice to have a change of focus.”


“NATO ended their mission today, right?” Josh clarified.


“You bet,” Amy smiled back at him.


As they turned their focus back to their work, Amy couldn’t help but look over at Josh now and then. It was nice having a friend she could rely on for this time of year. It wasn’t going to be easy but at least she had friends and family supporting her and being there for her. God would get them through this time of year no matter how vivid the memories were. They had a lot to be thankful for and there would be a lot to celebrate. Her cousins were adding to the number of family members, and it would be great to see how all the little ones had changed since she’d seen them in the summer. Amy felt so blessed to be apart of such a wonderful family.


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