Make A Wish

Jan 17, 2014

A month into the new year, and Charlottesville author Deborah Prum is thinking about how people can make their wishes come true.


A video has been making the rounds on Face Book. In it, a virtual Santa on a large screen greeted passengers in an airport lobby. As he scanned their tickets, he asked what they wanted for Christmas. People had differing reactions.  The little kids stepped right up and boldly made requests. One boy wanted an Android tablet.  Another said he’d like a Thomas the Tank Engine. The adults varied.  One couple asked for a large screen TV. Another woman requested a plane ticket home, but one guy just grinned and said, “Underwear and socks.”

When this plane full of people arrived at their destination, packages flew out of the luggage claim carousel. Guess what they contained?  Exactly what the people requested!

The kid with the Android tablet looked astonished and said, “NO WAY!”  The woman who received her plane ticket home started crying.

And, the man who asked for underwear and socks, received underwear and socks. The underwear guy didn’t seem perturbed. Yet, you have to wonder if he regretted how he spent his one wish. 

This video made me think about my dreams.  Do I dare to dream big? Or, do I ask too little from life then become disappointed?

What are the risks of not dreaming big?  One risk is getting underwear and socks when I might have received a plane ticket home. And, metaphorically speaking that “plane ticket home” might have been my heart’s desire, something for which I’ve always yearned.

I don’t mean to be morbid, but a couple of days ago, my beloved Golden Retriever died suddenly.  We’d taken a brisk walk up Radio Tower Hill.  Cassie seemed as sprightly as ever, but after we arrived home, she collapsed in the hallway and was gone within a few hours. 

Later, I started to think about all the things I would have done for her had I known that would be our last day together. I’d have given her that Dubliner cheese she loved so much, let her chase groundhogs in our meadow and led her on one last muddy romp through Ivy Creek.

So, I’m wondering about you? What are your dreams?

Just to be clear, I’m not encouraging hedonism. Take a minute to identify a couple simple dreams. Say them out loud. Maybe you’ve always wanted to learn to play the pennywhistle or visit Montreal during Winter Carnival or raft down the Colorado River in the spring.

The New Year is rolling around. How about making plans to realize one dream? Doesn’t have to be big.  Little is okay, too.  Be brave, take a deep breath and go ahead. You just might wind up with a lovely plane ticket home.

Deborah Prum is the author of First Kiss and Other Cautionary Tales.