Today (14 October) is the 21st Birthday of my friend Kiss Mercidesz. I met her 10 years ago this last August when Robert and I traveled to Europe for Guidepost’s Oberammergau tour. We went through Hungary, the Czech Republic, Austria and finally Germany and saw the Biblical pageant play performed every ten years in Oberammergau, Germany. (Look it up for more information!)
We were in Hungary site-seeing and stopped at an open-air group of shops. One was a linens shop that was family owned and the family did the embroidery for the pieces themselves. A ten year old girl was there helping her mother and grandmother. She was doing a delightful Vanna White imitation. She brought me doilies and table runners etc. and was saying, in very good English, “Do you like?” Mother and grandmother spoke even less English and she was a great help.
I purchased a pretty doily for each of my female relatives, an embroidered cloth for my glass top table and an embroidered peasant blouse for my granddaughter.
Before I left the shop I asked if I might send a gift to Kiss Mercidesz and they gave me her address in Estergam. I also learned that her name was Mercidesz Kiss but it is European to introduce surname first. (Bond, James Bond)
On my return to the U.S. of A. I began working on a special box for Mercidesz. I picked a reindeer from our adoption room just for her. (I have mentioned the gentle madness of the reindeer before.)
I made for the little reindeer a whole box of outfits: party dress, Christmas dress, play cloths, jammies, swim suit and beach towel, and a blankie. We explained to the little deer she was going to Hungary. She was afraid she was going to BE hungry. When we got her ready to send she was scared to be in the box alone all that way. So we used a Jedi mind trick to put her to sleep until she got to Mercidesz. “You will sleep until you arrive. You will not be afraid!”
My favorite gift that Christmas came on Christmas Eve. An e-mail from Mercidesz saying “Lili” had arrived and she loved her.
Christmas became a fun time for me. I got to plan fun gifts for Mercidesz and sometimes Lili too. (Matching knitted ponchos for the two of them one year.)
Over the years I also received gifts – usually linen pieces and candies. My favorite gift Robert framed for me. It reads: House Blessing
Where faith is, there’s love
Where love is, there’s peace
Where peace is, there’s blessing
Where blessing is, there’s God
Where God is, there’s no need.
This last year I finished the final book of the Promises Series I’ve been writing. I dedicated it, in part, to Mercidesz Kiss for her friendship through the years and quoted the framed linen message. I think the message on this flowered linen gives real meaning to our lives. When we have God the other things: faith, love, peace, blessing fall in line.
Happy 21st Birthday Kiss Mercidesz – and many more!
Written by the Rev. Susan Perkins, retired pastor from the United Methodist Church and member of the Pickaway County Ministerial Association for The Circleville Herald.