It was a terrible night. Screams woke us. Flames across the street scared us. Seeing someone jump from a house horrified us.
After that comes the gratitude that no one died and an even greater respect for those who put out fires. After that we got to know the five households quite a bit better as we greeted them when they returned to see the damage and when they returned to once again live across from our two studio row.
Three Christmas past, I lied for the man who survived that jump. I told his wife that we would not be able to get their house number done in time for the 25th. Side note ~> This year I once again lied to a friend when I told her the piece she wanted had sold, but left out that her husband had bought it.
Two Christmas past, this time the wife surprised the husband with a mosaic celebrating chili peppers.
So, when they came to our home show and commissioned a cross and a nightlight, I decided it was my year to surprise them on Christmas Day. The commissions sight unseen, plus a small bonus gift, were placed in a box and gift wrapped. It amused me that for the third straight year a surprise gift was being open, maybe not as much as amusing as the surprise created by telling fibs, and surely not as joyful as when they moved back, but it did amuse me.