Christmas in Dorchester

We received a Christmas letter from one of our neighbors, Seater Margaret O'Hara. With her permission, we are pleased to share it with our readers.- Ed Forry

For some time now I have been contemplating on what our Christmas letter should focus and on this cloudy Saturday morning, just three days before Christmas, Charlie and I went for a nice walk.  The main part of the following tale will provide each of you with just one of the many reasons Dorchester is such a great place to live.

We stopped at Cedar Grove Cemetery to say hello to Dan and other family members, looked out at the beautiful Neponset River where birds of some sort were swimming peacefully, and chatted briefly with some of the cemetery employees before heading out the Milton Street gate.

Our next stop was Gerard's Convenience Store/Restaurant in Adams Village, where we planned to purchase several calendars that are published each year as a fundraiser for Project D.E.E.P. (The Dorchester Educational Enrichment Program,) with artwork by Celia McDonough, the mother of the Founder of the Program, Brendan McDonough.  Brendan also attended Thayer Academy with Daniel.

There was a small snag in the intended purchase and that was that Gerard's could only take cash for the calendars, no credit cards or checks, and I did not have enough cash.  When I asked about making out a check, one clerk said "no" but another said, "wait I will call Gerard (the owner of the store) and ask if it is okay to take a check."  I told her my name and said that he knows me.

However, before she made the call a very pleasant woman standing next to me said, "Oh, I have some of the calendars, would you like one?"  I thanked her and said that I intended to buy six of them because I give them to friends for Christmas; to which she replied, "I will give you six because even though I've given a few to friends, I had about ten of them and think I might have enough."

The woman explained that her son is involved in the Project D.E.E.P. Program and that is why she had that many calendars.  She said we could come by her house to get them or she could deliver them, but since she lives a short distance from the store we said we would stop by on our walk home.  She gave us her address and while she drove home (she also offered us a ride) we walked.

On our way up the hill we spoke briefly with a couple of people each walking a tiny dog while trying to avoid slipping on patches of ice from melting snow.  As we neared her home she came toward us and apologized because she only had four calendars instead of six.  We assured her that apologies were not necessary considering her thoughtfulness and generosity.  After chatting for a short time and introducing ourselves, we thanked her again and continued our walk home.

This is such a great example of thoughtfulness and caring that we hope to share with all those we know and even those unknown to us, not only during the Holiday Season but throughout the year.

- Seater Margaret O'Hara