The Christmas That Santa Didn’t Get Any Mail

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Santa always looks forwards to receiving the parcels that his Aunty sends. So, over the years, he and the postman have become the very best of friends. Every morning, Santa watches at the grotto window, for the postman coming around the bends ! Even Christmas was no exception … Santa spent the morning inspecting the postman’s reception. Whenever anybody knocks, Santa peeps through the letterbox – so he even knows the colour of the postman’s socks and if his feet are sore after walking around so many street blocks ! Despite stormy weather, even in the rain and snow, Santa’s postman always made sure Santa got his messages from Oslo and Monaco.Generally, being Santa’s postman was a great job – he liked it a lot. Santa always had the most parcels in town and it was fun to see what letters Santa had got. Some were from the North Pole – others from places where it wsa hot. Down Santa’s garden path the postman skid – bringing a sack of letters from the children in Madrid. Some days, there were so many letters to take to Santa’s door, that all day, that’s all he did ! Some days, his postman’s sack was so full, through the door, Santa had to pull. Some days, his postman’s sack was so wide, Santa’s postman couldn’t fit inside. There were notes to be posted from Vietnam and special requests for presents all the way from Amsterdam. The letters that Santa received always had very interesting stamps – the postmarks were from all over the world and shone in the postvan headlamps. Being Santa’s postman was very hard work, indeed, but it was a wonderful opportunity, everyone agreed ! Despite the poor wages, the job did have it’s advantages. Mrs. Christmas always gave the elf bringing the mail a mince pie and some sherry (so long as he wasn’t too grumpy because of the bad weather and a small glass didn’t make him merry !). Having the best stamp collection in Santaland, was simply the icing on the cake .. as well as the cherry !

But the year that Santa didn’t get any cards, there was nothing on the mat … no newspaper … no junk mail … no catalogue … nothing fell through the letterbox aimed at the cat ! When Santa didn’t get any cards at all, no – one came to call. He was left looking miserable, sat on the garden wall. Although Santa looked out for the postman, as usual, without fail, no – one walked up the garden path, whistling as they brought the mail. There wasn’t any apparent reason for the demise – but Santa did find it strange that there was no post during the busiest postal season for delivering a surprise ! This Christmas, Santa’s letterbox didn’t make a sound. All Santa could hear around 9 o’ clock, was the postman stamping his cold feet on the damp, icy ground ! Was the postal service on strike ? Or perhaps the postman had gone off fishing for a pike. He could have been drunk, from the grotto party the night before (someone did say that Santa’s postman had dropped a letter on the floor). Maybe Santa’s postman had got the wrong address – or that his new post – van wasn’t working – so he was left sat at home playing an absolutely useless game of chess ! Santa was worried – this hadn’t happened before (usually, there were hundreds of letters piled up by the door).

Santa and the postman both tugged with all their might. Yet, the letterbox was completely jammed tight … nothing could go in or out … forwards or backwards … left or right. Because of the frost, nothing could be post. Even though Santa had many fewer letters this year than most, all was not lost. Santa found a penny to put in the electricity metre and plugged in the convection heater. Slowly, at first, but then much quicker, the ice around the letterbox melted, as candlelight warmed the hall with a glowing flicker.

Then, suddenly, in the grotto, Gerome the gnome heard a very loud rat – a – tat – tat. He heard a thud on the knocker and a ring of the bell, as well. “Gadzooks !”, cursed Santa, “Raspberry knicker – bocker !”, then through the letterbox, something fell. What was happening was extra – ordinairy :
“Special Telegram for the Christmas fairy !”. As Santa’s postman excitedly called out, all the elves rushed down the hall, to see what all the commotion was about. It was a message from Mo the Eskimo, inviting everyone to tea, telling them which way to go and requesting RSVP. Because the postman had to fly, Gerome the gnome quickly scribbled a reply.
“Why don’t you go down the chimney ?”, asked Santa, “Like everyone else does at this time of year” (to Santa it seemed so obvious – not in the slightest bit queer !). Now whenever the postman knocks, Santa always checks the letterbox.

© Jacqueline Richards 2008

 

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