This is Pastor Tim’s article which appeared in the Evening Leader on Monday, May 3, 2021
I was looking for something to write about for this week’s article and I was scrolling down Google, which is what I do when I am desperate for a topic to write about. Let’s see, one article complaining about how boring the Oscars were, another article gushing over how woke the Oscars were. I couldn’t make myself care. I checked the movies and actors who won and I had never even heard of any of them. In their defense, the Oscars do not nominate Marvel or Star Wars for any awards, so it is highly unlikely I would have heard of any of them anyway.
There were a lot of people who had a lot of opinions about George Floyd, who is apparently now a modern-day American Saint and Martyr to the Black Lives Matter movement. Nothing to comment on here that won’t get me in hot water with one side or the other.
However, buried deep on the second page of my Google newsfeed, I met a man named Alvin Bamburg. I would just like to say that, based on this one article, I want to grow up to be just like Alvin Bamburg. Who is Alvin Bamburg, besides my personal hero? He is a hunter who lives in Grand Cane, Louisiana. He was out hunting in mid-December last year when he found a balloon with a note attached to it. He picked up the note and it turned out to be a Christmas list from a little girl.
Alvin took the note home, scanned it, and of course, posted it to Facebook. After going viral, the note was found by Leticia Flores-Gonzalez. Her twin daughters had written a Christmas list to Santa and released it in a balloon and that balloon traveled from their hometown in Kansas to Grand Cane, Louisiana – 650 miles away!
Alvin and Leticia sent messages back and forth for a while. After getting permission, Alvin and his wife travelled the 650 miles from Louisiana, and gave the Flores-Gonzalez family a belated Christmas present, which was requested in the list. What was the gift? A new puppy that the girls quickly named Max.
Alvin and the Flores-Gonzalez family spent a whole day together sharing a meal and getting to know each other. It turned out to be a wonderful experience for two families who never had a reason to meet, but a chance Christmas list made its way from one to the other.
Leticia wanted to give the girls a chance to do something cool for Christmas since so much of the world was upside down because of COVID shutdowns, and sending up the Christmas list on a balloon seemed to be the most creative thing they could think of to do. Well, it worked because a modern day Santa found the note and granted their wish.
And as if this story wasn’t good enough, Alvin has a white beard.
This story is so positive, and made me feel so good about the world that I can’t believe it made my Google newsfeed at all. I wish we could have more great stories like this, and if either Alvin or the Flores-Gonzalez family ever get wind of the article, God bless you both. This is a sweet story with a sweet ending, and it included an adorable picture of two dark haired little girls and their new puppy with Alvin and his wife.
The moral to the story is that there will be times in life when you will notice the random Christmas list stuck in a tree. What you do with it will be the difference between some litter in the woods, and a human-interest news story that affected someone so much so that there is an article here in the Evening Leader. Now you are reading about it, and I am sure you smiled as you read.
I was ready to really lay it on heavy this week because there are so many things in this world I am aggravated with, but this is so much better.
Thank you, Alvin, for not only being a modern day Santa Claus, but for being a shining example to us all.