Our first Christmas together was in 1951. I’d been working at the plant for eighteen months or so. Had already got a raise. We’d been married since June. What’s that – six months? We didn’t have much, looking back on it now, but we felt like we were rich. Our rent was nothing, not even a week’s pay, and next to nothing for insurance. We put money into savings every month. Didn’t know what we’d do with it.
She loved Christmas. Fixed the house up with pine and holly and red candles. I never said much about it. Didn’t ask her what she wanted; anything like that. Christmas eve I just started pulling those packages out of the back closet. One after another. I thought she would cry from the joy. Every stitch of clothes I bought her, she went right then and put on and waked around that little living room of ours posing like she was a model. She could have been, you know. Tall as she was. Pretty as she was. You remember.
That was the year I bought her that Sunbeam mixer. It never gave out. Here it is sixty-three years later and it’s still on the kitchen counter. She loved it and grew to love it more the longer we kept it. Said that it was a symbol of our love. Never ending. I’ve not touched it since she died. I can’t stand the thought of it ever being turned on and not working. I don’t know what I’d do.