Does it seem strange to you that Christmas is a week from today? Did Christmas come suddenly and quickly this year or has it felt like it was dragging? I know for me it's come much too quickly. And it's hard to believe it's Friday again!
I don't think I'll be doing much writing at all until January because I'm so busy and my evenings seem to all be full. I am looking forward to getting back to writing though and especially "The Graham Quartet." Yep, I'm going to be working on book 2 next month. You can all start praying that I get all the ideas I need and am able to get it written.
Oh, I wanted to tell you all that if you like special deals, free books and things like that, then you should go to Read Another Page and sign up for my mailing list. There will be times when I offer one of my books at a special discount or something to my mailing list group only. And no, I'm not going to be flooding your inbox with emails every day. (And for those of you who don't want to put your real name on the form, you can use whatever name you usually use online.)
Heads up readers, if all goes according to plan, I will be posting every day next week except Sunday. I hope you are all ready for lots of things to read. :) And we'll get started right now.
The Christmas She Wanted
The van pulled to a stop and a State Highway patrolman, warmly dressed, stepped over to the driver’s window. “Hello folks. Were you planning on driving farther than the town?”
“Yes.” There was a note of hesitancy and question in Oliver Rush’s voice.
The officer had noticed the children in the back. “Sorry, the road is closed past the town up ahead.” Before anyone could say anything, he went on. “There was an avalanche up in the mountains and the force of it sent snow everywhere; the road is blocked for over a mile. With the forecast calling for at least another foot or two of snow, it’ll probably be after Christmas before it’s clear again.”
Mr. Rush tapped his fingers on the steering wheel for a moment. “Well, I guess if the road is closed, we can’t go on. I’m not sure what we’ll do now. Are there any hotels in town?”
The officer nodded. “Sure, but I think you folks would be more comfortable at Saffell Park. They have winterized cabins there, fully furnished except for food, and with the size of your family, you might enjoy it more. The roads are clear to the park and it’s not many miles from here. I can give you directions if you want.”
Leaning over, Mrs. Rush asked, “Will they be able to tell us when the road is open again?”
“Oh, yes. We keep them informed, and they are always careful to let their guests know.”
“Are you sure they’ll have a cabin? I mean, I’d hate to drive out there and find them full up.”
“Hang on a minute and I’ll check for you.” The Highway Patrol walked over to his car and conferred with another officer. Soon he was back. “Yep, they have several cabins. If you want, you can give me your name and I’ll have them hold one for you.”
Oliver turned and looked at his wife. What should they do? She gave a faint nod and he said, “That would be appreciated. The name is Rush. Oliver Rush, and there’s six of us. And thanks. We’ll have to get some groceries though.”
“Not a problem. You can drive on to town and there’s a gas station, some grocery stores, and a few restaurants if you need them. Anyone in town can tell you how to get to the park. Drive carefully and have a merry Christmas.”
“Thanks. Merry Christmas to you too.” Mr. Rush rolled his window closed, shutting out the frigid, snow-laden air, and gave a sigh.
It wasn’t until the van was around the road block that groans and exclamations of annoyance and dismay filled the back. “You mean we have to stay in some old cabin?”
“We should’ve flown there. I knew a road trip would be a disaster.”
“Why can’t we go a different way?”
“Should we go back home?”
“Man, this is going to be boring if we get stuck here too long.”
“Why don’t we just go home again? At least we wouldn’t have to stay in some uncomfortable cabin.”
Finally Mrs. Rush had heard enough. “All right everyone, be quiet! All this complaining isn’t helping matters right now. We need to figure out what we are going to do.” She looked appealingly at her husband.
“I say we spend the night at the park and hope the roads are open in the morning.”
“But he said they probably wouldn’t be open until after Christmas.”
“Hmm. That’s right. Well, we’ll pick up some food and we’ll wait it out. I’m not driving all the way back home only to turn around and drive back. Besides, it’s growing late and the snow doesn’t look like it’s going to stop soon.” He carefully turned off the highway on to the off ramp. “If we decide not to go to Grandma’s after all, we can just go home tomorrow. If the roads are open.”
The gas station was easy to find, and after filling up, Mr. Rush drove down the street to a grocery store. “All right everyone, let’s all go in and pick up some food for our layover.”
There was some murmuring but no loud complaints this time. Coats were pulled on and buttoned or zipped. The only excited face was that of Lester. He viewed it all as a great adventure and couldn’t wait to get started.
The shopping took longer than usual because Mrs. Rush didn’t have a shopping list and everyone had a different opinion about what they should get. Finally she turned, “Dixie, take your brothers and go to the front of the store and wait for us there. I cannot think with all of you talking at once.”
“All of you stay together,” Mr. Rush admonished, looking directly at his youngest son who wasn’t fond of obeying his elder siblings.
Carrying the grocery bags out to the van some time later, no one was in a very good mood. Lester was hungry and tired of waiting. Brad wanted to get back to the game he had been playing before everyone was interrupted, and he was hungry. Shawn and Dixie were getting on each other’s nerves and neither one wanted to go to the cabin. Mrs. Rush had a headache and was tired and hungry, and Mr. Rush hated having their schedule messed up. He had been looking forward to spending Christmas with his folks and now it didn’t look like that was going to happen.
“Can’t we get ice cream?” Lester begged as Dad started the van.
“No, Les,” his mom replied. “We’re going out to the cabin so we can get settled before it’s too dark.”
“But I’m hungry.”
“Yeah, me too.” Brad put in. He reached into his bag and pulled out his iPad.
“You’ll just have to wait a little longer.”
“Hey!” Brad’s exclamation startled everyone. “What’s wrong with this?”
“With what, Brad,” Mr. Rush asked.
“Here, let me see,” Shawn tried to take it, but Brad pulled it away.
“No, I want Dad to see it. You’ll probably mess up my game.”
“I would not.”
Have you ever had a trip interrupted like this?
Would you have wanted to stay at the cabin?
What's wrong with Brad's iPad?