She took down a cookie jar and poured from the bag a myriad of hard candies into the jar, and took it into the living room to set it down next to the wooden bowl. Starting back for the kitchen, she paused, turned to the mantelpiece and stared at the yellow paper. Taking the wargram and holding it at arms length, she glanced at it, then slowly walked to the armchair and sat on its edge. She read it again and again—always it read the same way. Finally she rubbed her eyes and put it in her lap. She heard children’s voices and the bell ring. She jumped up—the yellow paper falling to the floor—and answered the door to the shrieking call: "Anything for Thanks-giving?"
For the past week Sally and Pam’s club had rounded up assorted car-tons and tins and last night they dressed them up with holiday drawings and lined them with tissue. Sally and her father loaded the decorative cartons and cans onto the garden cart. When Janie arrived, the two girls got dressed up like pilgrims—each wearing a pair of Timmy’s knickers— to solicit the neighborhood for cookies, nuts and other more durable tasties to mail to the young men overseas on Sally’s growing list. They rolled the cart down the sidewalk, stopping it at every other house, while each picked a house, going to the door and extending a goodie container. The residents gladly filled it upon hearing "Anything for Thanksgiving for our boys overseas." Some would even ask for another container. In the buckle of each of the pilgrim hats was an index card labeled "cash or stamps for mailing." The girls would tip their hats and mention that it took stamps to mail all this. Many responded with pennies, silver coins and some even proudly threw in a dollar bill. One proud father who had three blue stars in his porch window waved before Sally’s eyes a full sheet of purple George Washington three cent stamps, then dropped it in her hat....
Janie seemed riveted to the two blue stars on the banner in the Cory window. "Saints in heaven, Sally, how our world is changing.… Did you notice that practically every house we stopped at had at least one blue star?"
Sally flinched as she edged the cart into the driveway and grunted grimly, "Yes, and not all blue either."
Janie crossed her heart.
[On Amazon ISBN 1413754872]
Copyright © 2008 Richard R. Kennedy All rights reserved. Revised: Aug 24, 2008.