A red wooden case of Cokes

One of my favorite childhood memories is of my grandfather, Papa, at Christmas. Papa was a tall, quiet man. He usually wore Pointer overalls with a button-up-the-front shirt and a long-john shirt underneath, even in the summer. I can see him now on that Christmas, quietly stepping up onto the back porch as Grandmama yells at the top of her lungs "Merry Christmas!" In his big, work-weathered hands was a bright red wooden crate full of glass-bottle Cokes. This particular Christmas was so cold that he left them on the back porch and they stayed cold. I remember my little sister drinking so many that she got a kidney infection. To this day, I still love a Coca-Cola.

Last Christmas Eve, in walked my tall, handsome husband with a bright red wooden crate full of glass-bottle Cokes. All I could do was laugh and cry, both at the same time. He began to explain the gift, but I knew immediately. No explanation needed. I couldn't wait to call my sister.

Wanda Garren, Lincolnton, Rutherford EMC

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