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Carol Perkins: Gallagher to the rescue

Previous Column: A pretend cruise to Hawaii

By Carol Perkins

"Let's sit on the porch and drink coffee," I suggested that warm Christmas Eve night. Soon the ferocious wind blew my hair straight up, chilled my coffee, and forced us inside. Unexpectedly, our neighbor's yellow cat flew through the bushes, hit the ground, and dashed across the yard.

Later, when the TV was on mute during the commercials, I thought I heard a faint voice outside. "Do you hear someone?" Guy did. We dashed to the front door, he flipped on the outside lights, and lo and behold, reindeer stood like decorations. "What in the world?" Guy was about to finish when the voice continued, "Up here!" High above us, Santa's sleigh was swaying in our pine tree, tilted downward as if ready to slide through the branches, and Santa was clinging to a nearby branch. "Get me down," the voice pleaded.

We looked at the eight reindeer, frolicking in the yard, and then up at Santa. "How did you get up there?" Guy asked. I was snapping pictures with my phone. "A whirlwind. Now, please get me down. Kids are waiting." The tree was twice the height of any other in our yard. What was Guy to do?

He retrieved a rope from the garage and started to climb the tree. "You'll break your neck," I insisted. "I'll call the fire department."

Santa yelled, "Do something QUICK." The reindeer had headed for the creek.

Guy said, "That will take too long. Do you have Gallagher's number?" I did. "Call him," he said.

"But it's Christmas Eve," I reminded him.

Guy continued, "He'll come. This is an emergency!"

In a matter of minutes, Matt arrived in his tow truck. He hooked a winch to the sleigh and eased it down with Santa gripping his seat. "I've done a lot of jobs, but it's the first time I've rescued Santa," he said as he patted Santa's back.

"All the children thank you, and now I've got to get going," he said, looking around for something. "Where's my bag of toys," he asked no one in particular. Comet and Cupid flew around the side of the house with their teeth latched onto the bag. "It was in that field over there," said Cupid, pointing with his nose. "Good girls," Santa said. With one whistle, the other reindeer lined up, and Guy and Matt harnessed them to the sleigh. Laying his finger aside of his nose, Santa rose above the tree and then above the clouds. "What is that on the back of the sleigh, sticking out of the bag?" I asked as I watched them ascend. The yellow cat with his front paws covering his eyes was in for the ride of his life.

Christmas morning, Matt found an envelope among the branches of his tree. Inside was a note. "Thanks for saving Christmas." Attached were three tickets to Hawaii.

(Matt Gallagher owns Gallaher's Appearance/Auto Repair Shop in Edmonton and has spent a career coming to the rescue of others. This was written with his permission.)

You can contact Carol at

This story was posted on 2021-12-26 08:33:32
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