Hubby tells me I'm too cynical.
However, it's life that's taught me to be that way. I have gotten to a point where--except for a select few--I expect the worst of people. And, usually, they don't fail to deliver just that.
One of the things I have dreaded every Christmas for the past few years didn't happen this year. One annual occurance that truly speaks of the evil in peoples hearts. I am truly surprised.
You see, once upon a time, I lived in New Orleans. I had many friends there. Things were pretty good. But I didn't quite fit in down there so I moved away and made my life where I am right now. It's been a good choice for me. I got a good career, a beautiful home, my husband, and out bouncing baby boy. But I had kept in touch with the pals down south and occasionally we'd even meet up together.
Then Katrina happened.
Remembering how things went down on 9/11 with the phones, I decided to just send out e-mails and wait impatiently to hear that everyone was fine. Within 2 weeks everyone wrote back that they were safe, secure, and no they didn't need anything, a ride, or a place to stay. Later when everyone had returned home, we checked in again to see how everything was and again everything was fine. They did not live in the terribly affected areas. It seems everyone just lost the food in their fridge and freezer, had gained a vermin problem, and 1 or two had minor damage like a few shingles missing, a downed tree, or a broken window. But all their homes and stuff was otherwise just as they left it.
Everyone was very fortunate.
Then later I started hearing from them that they had recieved some aid moneys. Okay, I figured, so they can replace the spoiled food, call an exterminator, and do any minor repairs that had popped up. Fine.
They bought Hummers. They bought diamonds. They spent money meant for those in need on ostentatious luxury. These weren't any small token aid payments. This was significant money.
I let them know I didn't want to hear about this anymore. That this upset me. That I felt this was wrong and they should return it all.
They told me I was silly. They were owed this.
I stopped talking to them.
Then yearly during the holidays there'd be a form letter that would come to me from several of them about their strife. How horrible it is to be in New Orleans. How they have no money to buy their children Christmas presents. How their utilities are going to be cut off because they are many months past due. How their house was destroyed and yet they continue to live in it because of no federal aid.
Every year it enrages me. The greed. The disgusting greed.
But not this year. This year I had a respite from being reminded how ugly people can be.