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Regardless of what our personal traditions of celebration are during this time of year, one of the common themes seems to be that of peace, love, forgiveness and giving.  It’s a time of celebration.  But it’s also a time of extreme stress for many.  People who can’t be with loved ones, or worse, don’t have loved ones.  People who have financial worries and feel that they can’t have the celebration they’d like.  People who are having a hard time at work or in a relationship.  There’s all kinds of stresses that can make us lose sight of what it’s really all about.

We get grumpy about how commercialized it’s become, how crowded stores are, how pushy and rude people can get, how expensive everything is, how tired we are, how much work we have to do, the fact that carols and advertising start too early, that Christ isn’t in Christmas anymore, that Christ is in Christmas, wording, greetings.

Then someone, a company no less, big business no less, manages to not just remind us about the magic of the season, but actually makes the magic happen!  Harry Potter or Professor Dumbledore could not have done it better.

WestJet, a Canadian airline, did just that in November 2013.  They gave 200 passengers the most fantastic magical adventure.  Read the short article and watch the video.  If it doesn’t make you teary… well then all I can say is watch it again!

The idea itself was magnificent in my opinion.  I can only imagine how much work, and money and planning it took to pull this off.  Even the Grinch and Scrooge could not have resisted being part of this surprise plan if they’d been around.   What I loved though is how much everyone seems to be having fun by being involved in making this surprise happen.  Sure, I know it’s a company wanting to do something to get more customers, make them stand out against other companies and let’s face it, a viral video is always good for business, especially around Christmas.    But, there’s a part of me that just wants to believe that it was more than that.  I really feel that someone(s) somewhere really wanted to make a difference.  You know what?  They did!  Everyone’s heart grew at least 3 sizes that day!

The airline promised when the video views hit 200,000, it would donate flights to reunite a family over Christmas through Ronald McDonald House. The family has not yet been chosen.   (from the Calgary Sun)

The video received over 300,000 views in the first 24 hours.  Needless to say, you can’t keep this kind of magic a secret for long.

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”  Margaret Mead

Kindness, giving, love, peace, joy:  the spirit of the season regardless of what we call it.

©2013 J Fries/Rise Like Air

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