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On December 25, 1976, I experienced the real meaning of Christmas in an unforgettable way. My then fiancée, Jeanie, and I left Langley early in the morning to spend Christmas with my parents in Williams Lake. At 6:30, in a forested area near Spuzzum, the engine of my car blew up, leaving us stranded on the side of the road. What to do? No cell phones in 1976!

There was a house some distance away with smoke coming out of the chimney and we dared to ring the doorbell. “Merry Christmas!” was the hearty greeting from the nightgown-clad couple who wouldn’t let us say anything until we were comfortably seated in the kitchen with a hot cup of coffee. We finally explained our unfortunate plight and they called the Greyhound station in Hope to arrange a pickup by the next bus, they towed our car off the highway where it would be safe, and fed us breakfast. They had an electric organ and, being musicians, we spent the next hours playing and singing Christmas carols together like old friends.

Giving, sharing and loving – isn’t that the heart of Christmas? I hope that you can share that spirit this Christmas with friends and family and maybe even total strangers that ring your doorbell at 6:30 on Christmas morning.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you all from the BCRTA Board of Directors!

Gerry Tiede