“We wished you a Merry Christmas!” The popular Christmas carol blared from the loud speakers.
The whole shopping centre was particularly crowded. It was Christmas Eve. All around me, people were laughing gaily. The beautifully decorated Christmas tree, laden with exquisite baubles and twinkling lights, added to the atmosphere of festivity. As I shopped, I scanned the crowd and I smiled warmly to those who walked past. To my great delight, I spotted my classmate, Delphine, up ahead. As I made my way towards her, she reached out and took something from the counter in front of her. Unaware that I had noticed her actions, she slipped the thing into her bag.
I stopped in my tracks. The spirit of joy I felt quickly evaporated. I did not know what to do. Then, Delphine turned around. Our eyes met. Her face was flushed and her hands were trembling terribly.
“Why did you do that?” I questioned.
At first, Delphine feigned ignorance. However, as I continued to look at her, she finally broke down and confessed. In a voice tinged with shame, she told me that she had taken the watch for her grandfather.
As I did not want to draw attention of other people, I guided her to a quiet corner. There, she removed a leather-strapped handsome watch from her bag. Together, we went back to the counter and placed it back on its velvet bed.
Delphine had realized her mistake and she turned towards me with an abashed expression and said,” I don’t know what overcame me. I…I felt so lousy.”
I gave her a reassuring smile. She decided to make a homemade card for his grandfather instead.
That day, we learnt that the true spirit of Christmas lies in the well wishes we have, rather in the exchange of expensive gifts.