What was the most disappointing gift you received as a child?
I actually remember this one as well! This also has to do with a person who lived on our "Boulevard". Mr. Wood lived right next door to the sisters, Chrissy and Amy. I remember that for as long as I remember him being alive he had to have been 90. I know that isn't really possibly, as he would HAVE to age each year, but I only ever remember him being really, really old, and amazed every year that he was still alive.
There were a few other things I remember about Mr. Wood. I seem to recall his house being white and grey, but that may not be true. I remember that his mother lived with him, and he was her caretaker. I don't ever remember meeting her though. I remember that as kids we went to his house, but I don't ever remember going further than the front porch, and I don't remember why we even went there. Right directly across from his front door, on the inside of the house, was his mothers portable toilet. I can remember being a kid, and standing at his front door, and being terrified that when he opened it, she would be sitting right there, doing her business, for all of Gods creation to see. That never was the case.
Another thing I remember is that Mr. Wood always had gifts for us on holidays and our birthdays.
So some point in my very early teenage years, I received a present from Mr. Wood. I opened it to see it was Sesame Street coloring books. I remember being horribly disappointed in that he would buy me, a young teenage girl, Sesame Street coloring books. He obviously didn't know me at all, and what a waste of a perfectly good present receiving opportunity. I don't know what ever happened to those coloring books...I'm ashamed to know, actually.
Now I am 35. And as I sit typing this out, I am overwhelmed with guilt, sadness, regret. Mr. Wood was so thoughtful of us kids, yet I don't remember much about him. I feel horrible that I didn't have a closer relationship with him, because he obviously cared about my brother and I. I should have taken the time to get to know him. To keep him company, to play board games with him, to sit and talk....to learn his first name. I know I was too young to realize this, but I still feel guilt.
In the years since that, I have learned that I still, at my age, absolutely LOVE to color. It would appear that Mr. Wood knew something about me that I hadn't yet realized. So it turns out that the most disappointing gift I received as a child has actually led me to a memory that I can hold pretty dear, and a lesson to take time and cherish such a thoughtful gesture. It's also taught me that sometimes my elders really do know more than I think they do.
And I'd give anything to have those coloring books back again...
Mr. Woods house