Mysterious Ways: Special Delivery

An unexpected Christmas gift brought her warm memories of her late husband.

by
- Posted on Oct 24, 2014

David Suchet as Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot

I flipped through a Christmas catalog. I needed a gift for a neighbor who had been exceptionally kind and helpful after the Chief passed away. That’s what everyone called Clifford, my firefighter husband. This would be my first Christmas without him. I wasn’t looking forward to it.

The catalog had everything—clothing, personalized accessories, books, music and movies. I finally settled on a sweatshirt, something my neighbor could use this winter.

I was about to place the order when my eyes landed on a mustached man in a gray bowler hat, staring back at me from the cover of a six-volume boxed set of DVDs. Hercule Poirot.

My breath caught. How the Chief had loved Poirot! He loved turning on PBS to catch the latest maddening mystery only the diminutive detective could solve. We watched together, even though I mostly watched the Chief watch the show. The suspense kept him on the edge of his seat.

I sighed and ordered the sweatshirt for my neighbor. A few days before Christmas the box arrived. I checked the pink packing slip—one sweatshirt, in the size I ordered. I opened the box to double-check the item itself before wrapping it.

I poked through the packing peanuts. What? No sweatshirt? I thought. They sent the wrong order! I looked more carefully. Maybe they didn’t...

The Hercule Poirot series was laid out, the complete set. How could this be?

Customer service was as surprised as I was. “Keep the DVDs,” the woman said, promising to rush the sweatshirt. “We apologize for the mistake.”

Mistake? Not as far as I was concerned. I’d be spending a little bit of Christmas with the Chief after all.

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Tags: Winter
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