Oh, to return to those wonderful days of yesteryear when things seemed so much simpler and a real friend was a real friend.
It was Christmas school break back in the 50s, and Bobby and Tommy were riding the bus home, talking and thinking about Santa Claus. Tommy said that he had been a good boy and was hoping Santa would bring him a BB gun. Bobby was old enough and bright enough to know that if he wanted to find his favorite toys under the tree on Christmas morning, he needed to pray very loud so Mommy, Daddy, and Grandma could hear him. He also knew it helped if he turned down the pages in the Sears catalog and left it out where it could be easily found by family members.
However, down deep inside, Bobby wanted to believe in Santa Claus just like his younger friend, Tommy.
Finally, Christmas morning arrived, and there it was … the shiny brand new bicycle just like Bobby wanted. There was a few Matchbox cars, toy soldiers, and a brand new Red Ryder BB gun as well.
Bobby ran next door to show Tommy his new bike and BB gun. When he arrived on Tommy’s porch, he found his young friend sitting on the steps barely able to speak. He heard Tommy’s quivering little voice say: “Bobby, Santa Claus didn’t come. Either I’ve been a bad boy or Santa ran out of toys.”
Bobby could see the pain in Tommy’s eyes and hear the brutal disappointment in his voice. Bobby, without thinking, quickly said: “Tommy, Santa did come. He thought you were spending the night with me, and he left your BB gun at my house. I rode my bike over to bring it to you.”
Tommy grinned from ear to ear and was so excited he could hardly speak as he grabbed the gun and shot an imaginary bear off in the distance. Tommy hugged Bobby, and Bobby hugged him back. At that very moment, at 9 years old, Bobby once again believed there really is a Santa Claus.
On his way home on his new bike, without his new BB gun, Bobby kept thinking, “Please Mama, don’t be mad.” And she wasn’t.
A best friend may very well be the greatest gift of all! And wouldn’t it be nice to see a few of Bobby’s values in today’s chaotic world?