Vinny's Christmas Story 2001

Here presented is a Christmas Story written by Vincent Paul Scott, Jr., dated December 2001. It is set in the 1930s and is titled ...

A Message from Your Patriarch:

"I followed Dad as he pushed the large wooden wheelbarrow built for the Scotts by our good neighbor Mr. Richtar. We walked along Butler Street to the Sharpsburg Bridge, then returned via the railroad tracks that parallelled the Allegheny River. Along the tracks we picked up pieces of coal that had fallen from the gondola cars. By the time we reached 57th Street, we had a full wheelbarrow load of coal. Fallen trees from the hillside behind our cozy little home at 211-Rear 57th Street provided another source of warmth. I dragged those trees down the hill to our yard where Dad cut them and split the logs.

The coal provided heat for cooking in Mom's huge black iron stove that nearly warmed the whole house. For those bitter cold days, Dad always had logs ready in our fireplace with its beautiful mantel. I can still picture those 'warm' times as we gathered in the living room and listened to the radio and watched the embers.

There were many many challenging experiences for all the Scotts on the road to survival, particularly in the 1930s, as it was for many Americans. Our experiences were not hardships, as at first it seemed, but rather lessons of life that no college curriculum could ever hope to achieve.

In spite of all, I recall Christmas as a Great and True Joy. Mom always made a Special Dinner. Gifts, there were a few, mostly from the relatives, but while appreciated they seemed not so important. There was Joy because we understood the True Meaning of Christmas. We learned the True Meaning of Christmas at home, in school and in church.

There can be no real Christmas in Our Hearts without the True Meaning of Christmas---The Love of Mother and Child."