Tin Angel
by Mrs Susan McGaw (Salar)

This story about a beloved Christmas decoration my mother had for many years.

this tin angel is very like the one she had except for....



Pat wandered through the festive crowd with her brother and his girlfriend, taking in the lights and sound of a San Antonio Christmas. Brilliant lights in vivid hues of pink, gold, blue, and green lit the street and the merchant stalls this early evening. The stalls were equally cheerful. Colorful shawls, bright dresses, ornaments, handmade sweets, and inspirational art pieces faced the street from every quarter, the music of a Mexican-style band filled the lightly chilled air with their renditions of Christmas classics.

It was beautiful

Little Pat held tightly to her little purse and the few dollars she had to spend in honor of the occasion. She looked, wide-eyed at the bewildering array of booths, the crowds, and goods. She had been treated to dinner by her elder brother and so had a little money to spend to remember this special Christmas outing. She had not been to the downtown gathering before. Candy just did not seem like enough. And so she gazed hopefully at place after place at dolls, plates, jewelry, crocheted shawls. All too much...

After a time her pace began to slow behind the happy couple ahead of her, even content as they were to dawdle at the merchant's tables who caught her eye.

But then they drew near a tinsmith's table. Piled high in his space were all manner of images and objects fashioned of tin: candles, suns, starfields on dim grey lanterns and angels..oh so many angels..all in beautiful colors. They were bright like the lights themselves, like the fiesta dresses, like the candy she had chosen against. THIS was what she wanted! But could she afford one? She looked at one after another of the heavenly host on display. There was smaller one, perhaps? She offered her small fistful of cash to the artist and pointed hopefully to it. He looked at it and started to speak, then thought better of it. With a smile and an accented 'Merry Christmas' he placed the bright beauty in her hands. It was hers! She hugged it in delight for awhile and told him thank you. Then her brother came back to fetch her and they went on.

The happy trio wandered through the crowded streets taking in the rest of the sites. Pat kept up reasonably well for an hour or so but then her tired feet fell behind again and again. Her brother had to return for her again and again. Finally he offered to carry her treasure, thinking its weight must be too much. She acceded reluctantly, when he promised to keep it carefully until they returned home. On they went, but some time later, Pat found herself separated in the crowd once again. She looked up alarmed but could see no sign of them. She stood still and watched the crowd, knowing she could not be heard over all the music and
chatter already filling the night. She did not have long to wait, however. Soon she saw her brilliant angel's wings floating back in
toward her and moved to meet him. After a few minutes rest, they decided it was time to go home.

Tired, but reasonably happy they wended their way to the nearest bus stop for the trip home. Several people smiled at little Pat, hugging her tin angel once again. At last the bus came and let them on. He glanced at Pat's treasure but let her pass, only making her promise to be careful of its sharp edges during stops.

Pat showed her choice to family upon arriving home. Some thought it cheery, one brother thought it tacky. They were all amazed she'd been able to buy it with what she'd had with her.

Shortly thereafter, Pat climbed gratefully into her bed, placing the tin angel on her dresser in place of honor. There she could see a circle of angels surrounding her bed shining off the wings of her little tin angel.

...the fact that it was rounded, like this one



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