Monday, November 26, 2012

Strands of cheer

It was a dark, pre-Christmas night in 1880 when Thomas Edison invented the first strand of Christmas lights and put them up around the outside of his laboratory. In an era before streetlights on every corner, porch lights on every home, and bulbs aglow in every room, it must have been radiant. However, it took almost 40 years for the trend to catch on. I don't know why.

At 8 pm on Thanksgiving, my mom, sister and I piled into the car and got in line. Not for a killer deal on earmuffs or  TV players or yoga pants. No, we went to see the Christmas light display in Yukon, OK.  It was Thanksgivingy enough not to be crowded, and warm enough to get out and walk around and get up close to the brilliance of the displays.  Among the many pictures and images made entirely of colored bulbs were bridges coated in lights and this brilliant tree. It shifted color, as I've tried to capture, and we probably
stood there for ten or fifteen minutes just watching and snapping pictures while quiet carols played in the background.

Even though we got lost and had to walk the long way around to get back to the car--long story--it was a fun trip and a cheerful way to kick off the second half of the Christmas season (it starts Nov. 1).

I'm grateful for Mr. Edison and his brain spark and Christmas spirit. I'm grateful for the people who spend hours making beautiful displays for the holidays. And, of course, I'm thankful for God for electricity, for inspiring Edison to discover it, for making colors, and for sending Jesus so we have Christmas at all.

1 comment:

  1. That was a special night with much to be thankful.