I was in a place called Laguna Niguel for Christmas Eve. It’s a gated community in California a little south of L.A. It’s about a million miles away in every possible sense from Mississippi Avenue where I grew up.
But the people there were people from the neighborhood. The hostess Paula was my sister’s best friend from childhood. Paula’s mom, Mrs. Gerbino, brought the traditions and memories of my childhood Christmases with her. It made this first holiday without mom a little easier for both my sister and me.
Christmas Eve dinner was all that I remembered from my youth.