Monday, December 20, 2010

Christmas Delivery: Olivia

Before leaving the States I offered to deliver Christmas gifts to the children sponsored through Mercy Uganda. Delivering presents to the children here is always a privilege. I suggested a very small flat rate box size (5-3/8” x 8-5/8” x 1-5/8”) and then I gulped when I thought about the actual volume and weight associated with the potential for 30+ gifts.

Before plunking a box the size of Texas down on the coffee table in front of Olivia, I made the usual attempt to help her understand that the gift was from her sponsor Leslie not from me Leslie. I think when she saw me and she saw a plain brown box set apart she almost had a glimmer in her eye in hopes that the box would be for her. Her face brightened as much as any shy Uganda girl’s face would when that hope was confirmed.

Each time I deliver a gift to Olivia she hesitates to do any more than look at what can be seen in the top layer of the box. The reason for this hesitation I have yet to understand. When invited to look through the items, she did so carefully. Socks, shirts, pens and pencils. She had a decided look of puzzlement at some of the gifts. Disney princesses? Quaker Instant Oatmeal? Old Maid? Although she didn’t recognize the popular American brands, she loved them all.