Around Town With Julie


On Christmas morning, after a late night of celebration, me and four friends gathered together our bags of toys and make-up and headed to the Wal-Mart to join in the 29th annual Christmas at the Dump. Forty-five vehicles were loaded up with around 180 volunteers, 860 cooked chickens from three different rotisseries, 1900 bottles of water, 900 bars of laundry soap, 300 soccer balls, toys for all age groups, clothing, shoes, razors and of course loads of candies. When we arrived,  as the organizers configured the distribution site,  I wandered around looking for a table to help set up, I felt a little hands on my leg, I quickly looked down and saw the sweetest little girl with her hands out for candies or gifts. Luckily, I had a stash in my pocket, I humbly offered her some sweets and a little regalo, she then jumped in my arms to give me the biggest hug along with the sincerest smile, she literally made my heart melt and brought tears to my eyes. I quickly understood why this event has been going on for so long.

Christmas at the Dump was first started by Vera. She started distributing chickens, rice and beans to the families around the dump for 20 years. It has grown tremendously in the past 9 years, with the generosity of family and friends, who throughout the year gather clothes, shoes, toys and many other much needed goods, which allow them to share with the less fortunate during the holidays. It is important to mention that they are by no means any type of organization; they are simply a group of family and friends who enjoy getting together once a year at Christmas to give back to the community.

It was a tremendously humbling experience; I fell asleep that night counting my blessings. The joy of giving and sharing is the best gift you can give yourself. So if at any time you would like to make any clothing, shoes or toy donations; they are already accepting them for next year. I invite you to send me an email and I will gladly put you in contact with the organizers.

As the holiday season comes to an end, and I put away my one Christmas decoration, I wish to say that life is beautiful and life is grand, thank you Mexico for making this Holiday Season so bright and wonderful…Despite the rain! Until next week, Happy New Year!

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Vallarta Tribune
Celebrating twenty years of publishing weekly in Puerto Vallarta! Since 1997.

One comment

  1. Julie, thank you for your wonderful post. This I can comprendo.

    As a child in America, my sister and I found Christmas to be the most wonderful Holiday of the year, followed by birthdays and Easter. So did my children and grandchildren.

    My wife who was born in Texas was not so fortunate. Born on the wrong side of the train tracks, she was not so fortunate. A doll one year at Christmas , and a bicycle at a birthday.

    At three years of age in Texas, she took out a library card and became an avid book reader. Her family brought her to San Francisco in a military troop transport train when she was 8 years old, and when 12 years old in Junior High school located in an expensive neighborhood , we met .

    I found out later that when she began school in San Francisco, she had only two dresses and no coat. The school principal purchased a coat and dress for her. During the year of our engagement in 1954, I proved money for her parents to provide properly for her. At 19 we married.

    Her two jobs, one as the private secretary for the Regional Manager of Metropolitan Life Insurance Company , and later as Manager of the commercial division of Colwell Banker Real Estate Company, were cases of starting at the very bottom, and in a very short time, going to the top. It took me some 53 years in my career to go from the bottom to the very top in engineering..

    The lesion here is that you can give a person a fish, or you can teach the person how to fish. It is important that teaching a person to fish is all about getting a job. Both my wife and I were well schooled and very mature when we looked for jobs..

    In Puerto Vallarta, the Vallarta Tribune has posted the financial responsibilities of an homeowner for providing for a domestic housekeeper or a residential handyman. In San Francisco, Mexican handymen come by our house all the time for short time home jobs, like gardening, painting, etc.

    At many of the Building Material Supply Stores, they line up for cash paying jobs. Perhaps the PV city officials could provide a better way for people who require charity, to work. In the past, I understand that the government would provide a job to anyone who asked. What has changed?.

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