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Wednesday, December 21, 2005

A Christmas tale

ABOUT 4 WEEKS AGO, I WAS RUSHING AROUND TRYING TO GET SOME LAST MINUTE SHOPPING DONE. I WAS STRESSED OUT AND NOT THINKING VERY FONDLY OF THE CHRISTMAS SEASON COMING UP. IT WAS DARK, COLD, AND WET IN THE MULTI STORY CAR PARK AS I LOADED MY CAR UP WITH THE GIFTS I FELT OBLIGATED TO BUY. I NOTICED THAT I WAS MISSING THE SHOP RECEIPT WHICH I WOULD NEED TO GET OUT OF THE CAR PARK WITHOUT PAYING, SO MUMBLING UNDER MY BREATH, I RETRACED MY STEPS TO THE SHOPPING CENTRE ENTRANCE.

AS I WAS SEARCHING THE WET PAVEMENT FOR THE LOST RECEIPT, I HEARD A QUIET SOBBING. THE CRYING WAS COMING FROM A POORLY DRESSED BOY OF ABOUT 10 YEARS OLD HE WAS SHORT AND THIN. HE HAD NO COAT. HE WAS JUST WEARING A RAGGED AND STAINED T-SHIRT TO PROTECT HIM FROM THE COLD EVENING CHILL. ODDLY ENOUGH, HE WAS HOLDING TWO FIFTY POUND NOTES IN HIS HAND.

THINKING THAT HE HAD GOT LOST FROM HIS PARENTS, I ASKED HIM WHAT WAS WRONG AND HE TOLD ME HIS SAD STORY. HE SAID THAT HE CAME FROM A LARGE FAMILY. HE HAD THREE BROTHERS AND
FOUR SISTERS. HIS FATHER HAD DIED WHEN HE WAS SEVEN YEARS OLD. HIS MOTHER WAS POORLY EDUCATED AND WORKED TWO FULL TIME JOBS TO MAKE ENDS MEET. NEVERTHELESS, SHE HAD MANAGED TO SCRIMP AND SAVE TWO HUNDRED POUNDS TO BUY HER CHILDREN CHRISTMAS PRESENTS.


THE YOUNG BOY HAD BEEN DROPPED OFF, BY HIS MOTHER, ON THE WAY TO HER SECOND JOB. HE WAS TO USE THE MONEY TO BUY PRESENTS FOR ALL HIS BROTHERS AND SISTERS AND SAVE JUST ENOUGH TO TAKE THE BUS HOME. HE HAD NOT EVEN ENTERED THE SHOPPING CENTRE, WHEN AN OLDER BOY GRABBED TWO OF HIS FIFTY POUND NOTES AND DISAPPEARED INTO THE NIGHT.

"WHY DIDN'T YOU SCREAM FOR HELP?" I ASKED.

THE BOY SAID, "I DID."

"AND NOBODY CAME TO HELP YOU?"

THE BOY STARED AT THE GROUND AND SADLY SHOOK HIS HEAD. "HOW LOUD DID YOU SCREAM?" I ENQUIRED.

THE SOFT-SPOKEN BOY LOOKED UP AND MEEKLY WHISPERED, "HELP ME!"

I REALISED THAT ABSOLUTELY NO ONE COULD HAVE HEARD THAT POOR BOY CRY
FOR HELP SO I GRABBED HIS OTHER TWO FIFTY POUND NOTES AND F**KED OFF!

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