1928 - Alderson High School - 1968



I'll Be Home For Christmas

Barry Worrell - December 11, 2013

It's two weeks before Christmas and this time of year always brings back memories of spending Christmas in Alderson.  The things that made it so special has been adequately documented on this site by many people, so I won't repeat them here.

Most of the Christmases of my childhood and adult life were spent in Alderson, as I'm sure many of you can say the same. When I left Alderson in 1960, we traveled back home about every two weeks to visit the folks and always at Christmastime. The trips from D.C. were mostly filled with adventure and great anticipation. With the snow storms we sometimes endured we weren't sure we would make it home. It was either getting stuck on one of those hairpin curves on Peter's Mountain or driving with one side of car on the brim, hoping to get traction from the gravel. At certain spots we would have to back up and try it several times to continue our journey. Somehow we made every one of those trips that we started, and it meant a lot to have Christmas in Alderson.

Fortunately for Linda and me, both our parents lived within three miles of each other. The kids also liked it for it presented an "openings of presents in two different houses" and we were blessed to have Christmas with both sets of parents. As the years went by, we established our own Christmas traditions, which were built on the ones of our families. For a while we would alternate between Alderson and D.C., until our parents were unable to travel. With their passing, the trips stopped.

For a lot of us, age, distance and the economy has put those Christmases we use to spend in Alderson in the past. We have no parents to visit and no homes to stay in while we're there. We, like our parents, now stay home and look to those who visit us. We'll have to leave it to the folks that live in Alderson now, and the ones who still travel back home. I hope their memories are as special as ours were for us.

With each Christmas, I'm reminded of the song, "I'll Be Home For Christmas." Bing Crosby released the original recording of this in 1943 and the song reportedly came from a soldier's letter to his family knowing the possibility of never making it home again.

As a friend reminded me, we can't go back, so keep our memories close and concentrate on the real meaning of Christmas, and that's celebrating of the birth of Christ. That can be done regardless of where you are.

I'll take that advice, but also, I'll be home for Christmas...... if only in my dreams.

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