Growing up, Christmas Eve meant dinner and gifts with family at Mamaw and Papa's. Back then they lived in a house out in Daleville, a town in Botetourt County. To a kid, it was a really long drive from our house in Roanoke to our grandparents' house in Botetourt. It was a trip that involved getting on the interstate and driving forever (or roughly 20 minutes).
Dinner was always a fun experience. For many years it was your traditional turkey with the trimmings. Kind of like a sequel to Thanksgiving. Then one year, Mamaw decided to change things up. We had breakfast for Christmas dinner. Another year, we did a do-it-yourself sandwich line. It's nice to get a change up now and then.
My cousin Landon and I would crack jokes throughout the entire meal. Our parents would all tell us to cut it out. They wanted us to be a little quieter while we ate. But we knew that they were really laughing from the dining room while we cracked up at the kids' table. To be honest, there were times that we were laughing so hard, I was afraid one of us would choke.
After feasting on the roast beast, we would make our way to the basement where we'd sit on the floor and open presents. The kids would all open presents first (according to age), then the adults would open their boring stuff. Of course, while they did that, we would go and play with the toys we had just received.
One year, when everything was finished, April and I saw something amazing on the drive back home. It was a clear night that Christmas Eve, and on the interstate, we could see so many stars. As we looked up through the back window, we saw a bright light streak through the sky. That's right, we had seen Santa Claus.
Even back then, my mind was working logically. If he has to fly all over the world in one night, he would have to travel at the speed of light. Going that fast, if his sleigh would show up to the naked eye at all, it would appear as a streak of light. All of you unbelievers out there just hold on to your "meteorite" explanations. I know what I saw!