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The Easter Bunny's special house call

Easter came early this year, but I know how it works. You start with the spring equinox, which is usually March 21, then go to the next full moon. The following Sunday after the full moon will be Easter. That is, if you’re using the Western calendar. The earliest it can be is March 22 and the latest, April 25. It’s the only holiday we celebrate with a floating date with over one month of variance.

I’ve never heard anyone say they didn’t care for Easter. I’ve heard plenty of people say they hated Christmas, though I suspect it had more to do with the hype and commercialism. Maybe they grew up with rotten Christmases, but it wasn’t the day they hated, just their circumstance. But Easter abounds with good tidings to one and all, rich and poor, Democrat and Republican, so what’s not to like about it?

At its worst, it’s a wet day in spring with frothy tree canopies and life out-maneuvering death everywhere — in pastures, in paddocks, in nests and nurseries. At its best, millions celebrate the Christian account of Easter. Nestled between the two are Cadbury egg commercials, a Pear Blossom Run, wildflower hikes and egg hunts. What’s not to love?

I recall an egg hunt that happened over 20 years ago here in Eagle Point. Our daughter was about 7. The Eagle Point Community Association still hosts the fun scramble for candy eggs. It’s fairly divided by age, and all participants come away with enough sugary orbs to temporarily satisfy. That year, Emily came home with her basket of goods. She and best bud, Amy, were going over their haul, when Emily discovered she’d picked up one of the special, prize-winning eggs with a gold star on it. The star meant she had won a full basket overflowing with prizes and candy — an egg hunt jackpot, the granddaddy of Easter baskets. In the excitement of the hunt, she hadn’t stopped to look each egg over and had missed the star.

We rushed back to the school and the place where the prizes had been displayed, but the table was empty. There were no baskets. She didn’t cry or pitch a fit. In fact, she handled the loss so well, it made it harder for me, but Em’s let-down was real. Life was and is full of disappointments.

The woman in charge took our number and offered to arrange a surprise visit. A couple days later, I looked out the front window and saw a 5-foot something Easter rabbit, large feet flopping, walking toward the house with a fancy basket of goods. Emily answered the door and squealed, hardly believing what she saw. The Easter Bunny had made a house call. I wish I’d recorded the rabbit’s name, but what an awesome idea she had to take time to make things right for one child.

May you open the door, win the gold star, and celebrate Easter.

Peggy Dover is a freelance writer living in Eagle Point. Reach her at pcdover@hotmail.com.