Memories of Christmas Past or, So You Think this Holiday Season is Sad?

2020 has been a year to forget.  And now we are looking forward to a Holiday that is limited by a pandemic – a Christmas or Chanukah without our usual parties or family gatherings.  This got me thinking about other Christmases that were less than perfect. There have been a few, but one stands out in my memory as the worst. In December of 1969, I was teaching, living in Southern California, and busy falling in love with Tom who would later become my husband.  His career as a ship’s engineer took him away for long periods of time, and that year I expected him to be away.  Then late at night on December 22nd, I got an unexpected ship to shore radio phone call. Tom was excited. “The ship is coming into San Francisco the day after tomorrow but instead of only one day, we’ll be in dry dock [...]