Saturday, December 18, 2010

A Treasured Christmas Present

As I am busy wrapping presents for friends and family, my mind has drifted back to the Christmas of my 16th year, and the shocking gift that lay inside a seemingly hollow box sitting under the tree with a tag that simply said, "For Tina."

Like many kids, my brother and I had been present-detectives, spending hours in the days before Christmas around the tree, examining the wrapped packages for clues. Lifting, weighing, shaking, smelling...you name it. But this one present was completely baffling since it appeared to have no weight...not to mention, no "From."

Now...time-out for some backstory. In the months that led up to that Christmas, I had had my driver's permit. The lessons with my parents had not gone well--to the point I dented a bumper--so I'd finally been enrolled in a driving school. Even that did not go well. I flunked my road test. My parents had resumed the lessons, and a week or so befor Christmas, my mother had taken me for another road test. I figured odds were good I'd flunked again, but as was the standard then, it would be several weeks until I got my results by mail.

So, back to Christmas and present-opening. I grabbed the baffling present first. And indeed, there was nothing inside. But a piece of paper. And written, in my mother's handwriting was, "You passed your road test." My gaze flew to hers, and she was smiling and nodding. Apparently, after the test, the DMV examiner had whispered to my mother, "Tell her on Christmas that she passed."

Do you love this guy or what??? Letting the news that I'd finally earned my license become a treasured Christmas AND family memory. He certainly knew how to spread the holiday spirit!

And so here I am, all these years later, still behind the wheel, and with a pretty squeaky clean driving record to boot. (Okay, there was that ticket for making a left where it was prohibited once, but the sign was brand new!)


Anyway, I'd love to hear your thoughts on this story...or any treasured Christmas presents for your life!

Tina

Tina Ferraro
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www.tinaferraro.com

9 comments:

Tera Lynn Childs said...

Ha! That is hilarious and wonderful, Tina! I love hearing stories of Christmas spirit, especially from people like driving test administrators. Mine was a total Grinch (which might be why I failed the first time, too).

Cara King said...

I love it! So cute.

And I think there should be a grandfather law that says if you're used to driving through an intersection and going left, and they add a "no left turn" sign, you can't get a ticket for ignoring it. ;-)

Cara

TinaFerraro said...

Haha, Cara, especially the very next day after they have installed the sign!

And Tera, you weren't a first-time road test passer, either, huh? Funny how many people I know had to repeat!

Janie Emaus said...

What a great story. I can't recall any surprise gifts that I got, only ones that I have bought for my kids and grandkids.
But for the record, I passed my test the first time and back then we had to parallel park. Of course, these days, I can't make left turns unless there is a light.

TinaFerraro said...

Parallel parking is no longer on the California test...but when I took mine, back in New York, it was definitely the make/break element!

stephhale said...

I passed on the first time even though I had no business driving a car. And we had to parallel park then too. I would rather walk a mile out of my way then parallel park now though. :) cute story, Tina.

TinaFerraro said...

Thanks, Steph! Lots of people feel that way about parallel parking, but actually, I don't mind it. Funny, considering it was probably the reason I first failed!

Marley Gibson said...

Awesome story and I love the pic!!!

Anna R said...

I love that story Tina- I cried.