We were invited to a Christmas party this evening after church at a hotel. All the employees and their families were invited. We went directly after evening church worship, and we got there a few minutes early, but it didn’t take long for people to begin showing up.
First we went into a special meeting room where they had tables set up for the party Christmas wrapping paper as table clothes, Christmas tree balls in glasses as center pieces, and candy strew across the table. They were playing Christmas carols in the background. A girl from Brazil and her Mexican friend came to sit with us as well as a couple of American women and the son of one of them. The Brazilian girl works at the front desk, and the American women are both hotel maids. We sat and talked to them and got to know them a little. After that, the caterers began serving appetizers, so my daughter went and got us Cokes to drink with fried cheese, chicken nuggets, and baby carrots. My daughter and I both made origami birds. Hers was from a piece of yellow paper she had, and I made one from a piece of candy paper. We gave them to different kids who were at the party.
After that, we found that many people were going to the lobby. We met a girl named Briana that doesn’t work at either hotel, but was invited as a guest who had recently returned from Germany and was a Linguistics major in the university, so we had a lot to talk about. They served dinner, and everyone went through a cafeteria style line to get the food. It was all Mexican food. It was good except the guacamole was spicy. We ate with Briana and Mike.
After that, they began a game called “Dirty Santa.” Everyone had to bring a gift to the party if they wanted to play, and we had brought gifts. If you brought a gift, you drew a number out of a big envelope. When they called your number, you went up and got a gift and opened it. When the next person got their number, if they wanted a gift, they unwrapped another gift. However, they also had the choice of not unwrapping a gift, but taking someone else’s gift, and that person would have to get another gift. When it came my turn, I had seen some kitchen stuff that was nice, so instead of unwrapping a gift, I took the kitchen set, and they told me that it had then been stolen so many times that no one could steal it from me. When it came my daughter’s turn, she saw a blender and took it from someone, but the next person wanted the blender and stole it from her. Every time she got something, someone stole what she got, and it looked like she was going to end up with a very small Christmas dish towel. Her boss, Mike, intervened on her behalf and took care of her like he always does. He wanted her to get something better, so he took her dish towel even though we knew he didn’t particularly want it. He let her choose another gift, and she chose some casserole baking dishes and got to keep them.
After “Dirty Santa” was over, they played another game, but I stayed in my seat and watched everyone’s purses for them. Several people came by to talk to me, and I made friends with a Mexican lady named Maria, her son, a black guy, and several kids. I got to hold a baby for a long time. I could tell his mother was tired. She had passed him off to his eleven year old brother, and I volunteered to hold the baby, and I made friends with both the baby and the eleven year old. While everyone was coming by to talk to me, they were playing a game where they wore oven mitts and were trying to open gifts that had been wrapped with oven mitts. My daughter ended up with a scooter from the game, but she couldn’t imagine what anyone at our house was going to do with the scooter. By that time, Brandy, the mother of the eleven year old boy and the baby was on her way out because she was exhausted (She has five kids and had worked since 3:00 in the morning until about 3:00 in the afternoon at the front desk). My daughter decided to give the scooter to Brandy for her kids for Christmas.
After that, people began eating desert, but I skipped desert. I was getting really tired. They played another game where they gave everyone a ticket and had a drawing. If they drew your number, you got a gift. Neither my daughter or I got a gift.
Next, they were going to play another game where they had several things wrapped up in plastic wrap, layer by layer. They were going to roll the dice and that told them how many layers they could unwrap or something like that, and if something fell out, they could have it. We were tired, so we came on home.
I had fun talking to so many people. The last time I went to a party from my daughter’s work, we left really early because it was so noisy that no one could hear one another when they spoke. However, there wasn’t a problem with the music this time, and everyone was friendly.