"And so this is Christmas, and what have you done..." ~ John Lennon
This year, we have been blessed again to spend our Christmas Eve with Christmas Promise. For me this is how we celebrate Christmas. This year, Chuck, our elf for several years past moved up to being a Santa. Our replacement Elf had his schedule changed at work and was unable to help so we decided to try and steal an elf once we got there.
We waiting about 20 minutes and we finally snagged an Elf. She happened to be one of the main volunteers who was in charge of the pot luck and has been working with Christmas Promise for many years. We got our assignment, loaded up the sleigh and headed out.
Our 2 houses were within spitting distance from each other so I figured this would be easy. The first house was in a groups of fourplexes which not only did not have legible street numbers, did not have good unit indicators. Our Elf tried to find the location, but we ended up having Santa call the family. After a bit of a language barrier, Santa finally convinced them he was legit and we discovered they had moved to an apartment complex about a mile away. This turned out to be an enormous complex with no parking so the sleigh had to be parked on the street. Our Elf scouted out the location and came back to give Santa directions. She also indicated there were a couple of teen aged boys with skateboards on the way, so Santa stowed a six pack of coke in his bag and headed to the apartment. I stayed with the truck while our Elf tailed Santa with a bag of gifts. A short time later the boys cam walking by and headed up to the corner to meet their friends with the cokes in hand. I could hear a bit of the conversation.
"Hey, where'd you get the sodas?"
"No really, where'd you get them?" Followed by an argument in Spanish.
A few people passed me standing by the truck and everyone was happy and wished me a Merry Christmas including the woman and her "ugly husband" as she put it who were going to the corner store.
We finished the delivery and headed back to stop number 2 which was and upstairs unit at one of the original 4plexes. Santa headed up the stairs followed by the Elf who hung out around the corner. Santa came out to get the first bag. Elf took 2nd bag up. When Santa came out to get the 2nd bag, I saw Dad come out and look around. Elf was hidden and I could see him shaking his head. Santa said he kept asking where the stuff was coming from. As Santa was handing out gifts he noticed that one little girl was not getting anything. Turns out she was a cousin who was visiting. When he came out to get the next bag he relayed her info to Elf who gave me the info. I made a quick call to the North Poles and the Elves got to work on getting together gifts for a 3 year old girl. Elf ran the last bag up the stairs. When she came down I took the pecan pie rolls and sodas up so she could have a break. As I got to the top of the steps, one of the sodas slipped out of the six pack and fell down the entire flight of stairs hitting each step as it went. I figure it would be pretty tacky to give the a "5-pack", so I brought them back and tried not to giggle.
As Santa left he assured the little 3 year old that he would be back. She just looked at him and shook her head "No No".
Back we flew to the North Pole where we found Chuck back from his run. Paula informed me that he cried after his delivery. When he got to his house he asked for the little boy "C' by name. "C"'s eyes got big as saucers. "Are you "C"?" "Dad had to prod him to answer. Then Grandma saw Santa and burst into tears. Uncle was there, pretty drunk and insisting that Santa was his "best friend". "C" told Santa that he was the answer to his prayer. Grandma kept quizzing Santa on where he was from and who sent him but Santa didn't break. Santa didn't think Grandma would ever let him go. When he got outside he broke down and cried. I am so proud of Chuck. He is hooked now on being Santa!
Bob finished his paperwork and we grabbed the gifts for the little 3 year old and headed back. They were on the balcony when we came back and the little girl was so excited. I think she thought Santa forgot her. I could see her jumping up and down and Santa brought her gifts out of the bag.
As we were leaving, a woman came out from one of the other apartments with a toddler and a young boy about 8 who kept telling her "I told you Santa was real!" Santa had some gifts for them in his magic sack and then we hopped in the sleigh to head back home for a long winters nap.
Chuck's Elf, Chris Denny with Santa Bob
Santa Bob filling out his paperwork
Santa Chuck and his Mrs. Claus, Paula