The Wright Way

The Wright Way

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Stepping into Santa's Shoes

At the end of last summer’s cricket season at our Club, amongst the Junior Awards I wanted to present trophies to three “Most Improved Players” for the year. As our playing members’ ages spanned 6 to 15, I decided to award them to three players of differing ages – as improvement can vary at any stage of our development.

Now the youngest recipient was actually our youngest member – a lad who has now just turned 7 – but he couldn’t make the presentations night so it was down to me to get his trophy to him somehow. Of course, no one except me had any idea that he would be getting an award, but at some stage I knew there would be ways of getting it to him, albeit away from the ‘glamour’ of ceremony!

On occasions, events and happenings take place that might seemingly be random and just occur ‘by chance’. I call these cosmic alignments, because some kind of order has been wrought out of the random chaos. It is of no concern to me why these ‘orderings’ take place, or who contrives them. There are minds much greater and far more revered than mine, who will readily postulate views as to who or what might be responsible for such things. I’m just happy to put it down to Cosmic Order, and leave it at that. It keeps the magic intact, I feel.

See Me after School

This afternoon I had the opportunity to visit one of the primary schools where I go to teach cricket for Chance to Shine in the Summer Term – ostensibly to talk about how they might want to run the cricket part of their next summer’s sporting activity, in conjunction with me.
Now the teacher I wanted to see was the father of the player I mentioned above - so I took along the little trophy to give to him to take home for his son. In terms of my plans this was a ‘two birds with one stone’ situation!

I arrived after school had officially ended, although with the run up to Christmas there was a lot of extra-curricular activity going on in various classrooms. I duly found where he was, still at work, in a room with a couple of other teachers as well. To my surprise and delight there was one young pupil in a corner - filling his time doing some painting, while waiting for his Dad to finish off work.
After our greetings I said to his Dad, “I’ve actually come for two reasons. One is to talk about next summer’s cricket and the other is to make a presentation.”

The following moments were – for me – pure gold; the icing on a coach’s cake if you like – yet the kind of icing that wouldn’t have been the same if I’d actually presented his trophy when the others were awarded some months earlier.
This was totally, but totally, unexpected for both Father and Son, and I felt like I was standing there in Santa’s shoes, fulfilling the role of Santa for both of them.

I gave the young man his trophy and shook his hand - and we all clapped. I then asked him to read out what was engraved on the trophy, which he did – and then he had to leave the room for a bit to compose himself, as he was quite overcome by the emotion of the moment. 

This was, it turns out, his first ever award of any kind – yet thoroughly deserved, and. I suspect his Dad will need to get him a trophy cabinet in years to come!

Now we can all get job satisfaction, a sense of achievement for all the stuff that we do.
It is part of what I sometimes post up as being #LoveMyJob!
However, these particular golden moments are off the satisfaction scale - and yet are nothing to do with the actual work that I do.
The simple act of giving an award to someone for what THEY have done over a season – was, for three people concerned, transformed into something truly memorable.

That is what comes about when circumstances are presented for alignments to possibly occur. The facilitation of this particular alignment required some compliance by the three people concerned, albeit unwittingly by the young lad and his Dad.

And that’s the thing about Santa, as he wings through the night on Eves before Christmas, delivering these goodies here and those delights there – spiriting his way into people’s lives, sometimes via chimney, sometimes not; gradually filling up with sherry and mince pies, as his trusty steeds fill up with crunchy carrots.

He is all about the Magic and the Wonder that we experience.
It isn’t about the Gift, per se, it is all about the experience.
Father and Son didn’t wish for anything today – and I was just planning to drop something off in the course of chatting about next summer. Yet in our separate ways, all three of us had a special experience.

It may be December, and I may be Old Fashioned ... but I stepped into Santa’s shoes today and it was wonderful!

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