Merry Christmas

By John Swartz

What a year. Of course every year at this time I think we all look back and say – what a year, whether it’s been good or not so good. We also look to the future, maybe only as far as New Year’s Eve, and either hope for more of the same, or something better than what just happened.

Over here, it’s been interesting, launching the website last January, finding a groove in year two of SUNonline/Orillia’s existence, and dealing with disrupted plans for the launch of a new business. As it is, SUNonline/Orillia is currently similar to what I intended, but still a long way from fully realized. There is a lot of work yet to do building what I hope you will think of as an institution in our community.

I’m grateful for all who stop by to read, look at the pictures, or watch the videos. I’m grateful to have had some additional contributors along the way, and Jim Foster making me laugh every week.

I’ve never ask for anything at Christmas, mostly because I never know exactly what it is I want that doesn’t cost less than several grand, and no one is doing me that favour. Default is asking for socks and getting underwear, or a tie (I like ties, I just don’t get the opportunity to wear them, and when I do, Christmas motifs are out of season).

This year however I do know what I want. I’d like you to do something for SUNonline/Orillia.

Pass this email along, or share this on your Facebook page to people you know so they can join the email list and be notified when new stories are published. (You know it’s only 2 or 3 times a week an email goes out, so it’s not like they’ll have to be doing daily Inbox clean up on our account.)

If you haven’t clicked the Like and Follow buttons on SUNonline/Orillia’s Facebook page, or if you are not in the habit of clicking the Like button on stories posted there, please do so. Many of you Share the stories to your own Facebook pages, thank you, more of you can do the same when a story strikes a chord. Those things help to increase the reach of SUNonline to others and it’s an easy thing for you to do.

Go ahead, blow up my Facebook notification function with shares of this article. I won’t mind the clutter.

Regardless of how you celebrate the holidays, we all have a common ambition and that is to have our families and friends close by. For many, religion plays a role. Of course, those of you with long memories will remember a story I wrote for the Packet’s entertainment page once upon a time outlining all the borrowed ideas about Christmas which came for other ancient religious ritual, or just plain secular tradition, so to me Christmas is more about humanity and accepting each other more warmly than we do on say, Black Friday when there’s only one of what you want on the shelf and dozens rushing toward it. Christmas should be a 365 day affair.

In that spirit, Merry Christmas. May the best gift you receive not be the one you were wishing most for, but the thing you didn’t expect which you can carry with you the rest of your life.

In the mean time, I’ve got to get back to work on a few stories which are taking some time to pull all the pieces together. I think you’ll like them.


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