Who was the great philosopher who when asked on his deathbed how to be happy said: "Be kind"? Here’s to one of London’s local heroes. David, I salute you and wish you a very wonderful 2009.
A middle-aged lady, well-wrapped in a shawl, hat and gloves, her pale face frozen, wandered into a local Christmas Market on the 21st to purchase a tree. A bit late, you say! Agreed, but she had been laid-up by that awful virus for a week, she explained to the man sorting the few trees remaining.
She wanted a small tree for her small flat. He only had big ones left, and offered to cut one down for her.
But she longingly looked at the tree he had still standing in the tent where the decorations were being sold. It was a beautiful tree, bushy, lushly green, and the perfect shape. It was hung all over with with glittering, festive decorations. The rugged, hard-headed trader offered her the tree - once he had taken down the ornaments next morning. She went away delighted, and took his number so she could call him in the morning.
The next morning she called and was told by her cheerful Christmas Angel, "If you take down the decorations, you can take the tree for free." With a huge smile on her face she rushed down, not before packing a Christmas pudding for her lovely benefactor.
In no time she had cleared the tree of all the glitter, packed it into the car, and brought it home.
The tree and the decorations he insisted she take will remind her of this wonderful beginning to Christmas 2009 for a very long time indeed.