Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/2106819-A-Christmas-Letter
Rated: E · Short Story · Holiday · #2106819
Silly accidents do happen every once in a while.
Posted in Leger's Short Stories: Objects Telling Your Story, December 13, 2017

Mary sighed. How should I word my answer to Aunt Louise’s Christmas dinner invitation?

Mary picked up her pen—

Thank you so much for the dinner invitation, Aunt Louise. You know how Great Aunt Martha enjoys making her squash pies for our family get-together on Christmas, well, I don't think we'll be able to make it. Let me explain...

Yesterday, Martha sent her neighbor, Bob to pick all the Squash left in her garden. When he glanced at how much was left, he decided to ask his friend, Ken, to help him gather Martha's last bounty. It was a perfect day, a balmy forty-five degrees outside in our little town of Parkville, Ohio.

So, when the men finished picking all the produce, instead of making two trips, they decided to use baskets. I mean, these baskets were overfilled to the brim. When they walked towards the house, Martha must have been looking out the window for them, because she opened the door as soon as the men were ready to come in. Thanking Martha, Bob stepped carefully inside and tripped on the scatter rug in front of the door. He fell toward Martha, who couldn't get out of way fast enough, and they both tumbled to the floor. Bob found himself unable to breathe and wondered if he hurt himself.

Ken watched this all go down with interest as Bob’s produce flew every which way, and smiled, but soon became concerned at the proximity of Bob’s head. He put his basket down, and helped his friend stand up. When Bob saw where he fell, Ken told me he blushed like a schoolgirl. Falling on top of Martha was an embarrassing moment for Bob, our town's bachelor. He covered up his embarrassment by asking her. “Was it as good for you as it was for…?” He stopped when he noticed Great Aunt Martha wasn't moving.

Ken bent down to check Martha’s pulse and found it weak. Bob dialed 911 and help soon arrived. The paramedics revived her, examined her vitals, and noticed a large goose egg on the back of her head. When Martha kept repeating things, they told me she needed an overnight stay in the hospital.

So Aunt Louise, this is where Great Aunt Martha is until further notice. How long will the doctors keep her in the hospital is anyone’s guess; meanwhile, she seems to be in good spirits. What I’m having trouble adjusting to are the jokes floating around my small town. You know how a small town can be? Well, I love my Great Aunt Martha, and feel disloyal when I smile at some of them. What happened to her is no laughing matter, plus, those jokes don’t bear repeating. Some are downright disgusting! How low can someone go trying to be funny, I don't know? They mean no harm, I suppose, and I would laugh if I wasn’t so worried.

With all this happening, I cannot attend our family's dinner without Great Aunt Martha, because it just wouldn’t be the same for me ...

The phone rang. “Hello…”

“This is Dr. Jennings at Parksville Hospital. I just wanted to put your mind at ease by letting you know your Great Aunt Martha passed all the tests, and will be able to go home later on today, around 2:00 PM.”

“That's great news, Doctor! Thank you!” Mary hung up, and happily wrote down the good news.

“I just heard from Dr. Jennings, Great Aunt Martha is alright, and she’ll be released later on today. Of course, she won’t be able to travel just yet, so please enjoy the party. We’ll be thinking of you. "Merry Christmas!"

Your Loving Niece,

Walking back inside the house after mailing the letter, Mary's daughter, Angela, greeted her with—

“Unka Arnie said that Great Auntie Martha musta gotta thrill from Bob falling on top of her, and that’s why she fainted. What does he mean, Mommy?”

Rolling her eyes heavenward, Mary picked up her six-year-old, and hugged her. “Unka Arnie is trying to make a joke, sweetie.” Just wait until big sis gets a hold of him, he won’t think he’s so funny.

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