TBT Holiday Special…From the Archives…. Excerpted from “Musings” October 5, 2000 about working as a youth in a once thriving downtown Bennettsville, specifically as junior ice cream dipper/comic book salesman at Miller-Thompson Drug, under the expert tutelage of a young Van Edwards, who went on to become a successful local businessman. I, however, apparently opted to continue the comic book route. Anyway, here’s another Christmas memory…
“I recall a particular Christmas Eve when Dr. Red Thompson and I were the only ones still on-duty when the phone rang just as we were preparing to lock up, go home and await Santa. It seemed that someone in McColl had forgotten to buy film and was desperate to remedy his mistake. Could we, he asked, just wait a few more minutes in order to allow him to get over to Bennettsville and make that essential purchase?
“Despite Dr. Thompson’s desire to get home to his own family, he agreed to remain open until the man could arrive, and he and I sat down in the back of the store to await the customer. I suppose it was just the end of a long and busy pre-Christmas week and a good time to reflect back, but I’ll never forget how Dr. Thompson sat there and told me stories about his past Christmases. Even then I was fascinated by any type of history and was enthralled by his tales of long-past holidays.
“Before we knew it, almost an hour had passed without our expected customer arriving, and Dr. Thompson reluctantly determined that he was probably not going to. But to be honest, I think that he enjoyed the opportunity to relive his past through the stories that he told me. I know that I did.
“Red Thompson passed away in early1999, so I never got the opportunity to relate to him how much I enjoyed that Christmas Eve, or to say “thanks” for what I learned from him and others that passed thru those doors. But it all went into who I am today.
How lucky can one kid get?”