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Carol Perkins: Christmas 2020
Previous Column: A Santa Story
By Carol Perkins
Christmas 2020 found Ms. Claus in a tizzy. She had a surprise for Santa that he would not like, but it had to be done. A knock on the door signaled it was time. The Santa Village doctor stood ready as he eased toward Santa, knowing the big man's reaction would be that of a five-year-old. "You are one lucky man," he said as he whipped a syringe. "You get the first COVID-19 vaccine in our village just in time."
Santa backed away, but Ms. Claus guided him forward. "You can't visit all those homes without this shot!" He surrendered. "You could have warned me," he pouted. They knew the village would not survive the virus. Although they had been isolated since last year, Santa could bring it back, give it to the elves, and wreak havoc on Christmases to come.
His wife continued as he rubbed his arm. "Remember all the regulations," she said as she helped him into his suit. "Keep that mask on. You don't know who's sick and who isn't. Don't even pull it down to eat the cookies!" she ordered.
He wondered how he was supposed to eat them. "Here, put all the cookies in this bag and feed them to the reindeer." She handed him a decorative red bag.
He scratched his head. "Do you know how many cookies are left for me? They won't all fit in this. What am I supposed to do? Fill my pockets and toss them over cities like a frisbee?"
She sighed. "Just don't eat them!" Santa set out with a sleigh full of toys and an assortment of masks. For the first time, he had to gear up against something worse than the rain, heat, hail, and snow (although he liked the snow).
The night wore on as he slipped down chimneys, sneaked through doors, tumbled down stovepipes, and crawled through basement windows. He hailed the reindeer to an open window and offered them milk and cookies, leaving scattered crumbs. The reindeer must have gotten a sugar high because they flew faster than ever. The closer they got to the North Pole, the more tempting the cookies in his pockets became. "I'll just have a few," he said as the warmth of the chocolate chips and snickerdoodles filled his mouth and fell to his beard.
As the stable doors flew open for his return, he bellowed "HO-HO-HO." Ms. Claus happily greeted him. "What is that all over your mouth?" she asked. "Ugh, well, I had a few cookies in my pocket." She laughed, knowing cookies were his weakness. Her face touched his. "Do you have any sugar cookies in there?"
Carol's most recent book, based on a true story, The Case of the Missing Ring, is available through Amazon, both paperback and ebook. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This story was posted on 2020-12-24 04:19:37
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