"If you are receiving this message, it's because you've won our Social Living Contest..." the email read. "Your gift basket will be shipped by early next week. Please allow up to two additional weeks for your prize to arrive. Sorry it takes so long to get to you." Oh, no need to apologize. Most mail from the south reaches us eventually...and some never does. We just accept it like the cold and snow.
Back in October, the Chicken Soup for the Soul organization was promoting their new line of comfort foods and asked their Souper-Blogger family to help. If you opted to take part, your name was put in a draw for a Chicken Soup for the Soul gift pack. Thus, I shared these new products on my blog and practically forgot about this draw... until I received the exciting email. And started waiting for my gift pack. And waiting. And waiting.
During all this waiting, I mailed Christmas cards to my European friends and exactly a week later, they reached their destination. You would think if cards can cross the ocean in a week, a parcel from anywhere in the United States should have made it here in less time. Mind boggling, but apparently that's not how it works. In the mean time, more snow for our thin prairie blanket. Add another few days for delivery, but 'Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow...'
When days and weeks passed with no gift pack in sight, two scenarios came to mind: Seeing we're 'in the bleak mid winter', maybe this prize was coming via dogsled. If that is the case, they must have hit a blinding blizzard somewhere, and have curled up in a snowdrift to wait it out. In survival mode, the hungry team must have sniffed out all that Chicken Soup for the Soul food and licked away their frozen feast. I couldn't hold it against them, because who doesn't like chicken soup on a cold blustery day? (I prefer mine hot, though.) Even if it meant that my long-awaited prize went to the dogs. This reminds me of one of our Christmas books at school, 'The Twelve Dogs of Christmas'. The ending, albeit somewhat funny, doesn't work for me: "On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love gave to me, a cat." Cats are cute on cards, but I'll never have one on my wish list.
Anyway, the other scenario had me wondering if the UPS people couldn't find Canada under its shallow layer of snow. They're probably looking for an igloo with an address. We do get snow every winter and sometimes mountains of it, and Canada has been on the map for a few decades now anyway. But what else was I supposed to think? Well, other than putting a complaint into the company to install GPS's in their delivery trucks...and reminding them to make sure the device knows about our country, this 'True North strong and free!..."
Just as I was pondering giving up on ever seeing this prize, it arrived! More than a month later! But that hardly matters now. (Amazing how quickly a little food can make us forget.) I was delighted to finally see some of these new products up close...and eventually I will also taste the food. There's no figgy pudding, but this box still serves as lovely Merry Christmas cheer. Like a friend of mine announced one day, after I told her another one of my Chicken Soup for the Soul stories, "God bless those chicken people!"
And as soon as I hear there's a 'Chicken Soup for the Waiting Soul' book in the works, I'm sending in this story. It's bound to be a winner! Actually it would have fit in nicely with the book I'm reading now, Oh Canada, Wonders of Winter.
The long awaited prize pack