Sometimes I don’t know what to believe.

“Arya told me a Christmas story,” began her dad.

“Really? I thought you were the storyteller in our family!” I countered, clearly not planning to believe a single word he was about to say.

“Yes,” he continued, ignoring my retort… “that evening while we were at the enchanted garden.”

Wait a minute. “What enchanted garden!?”

“Our private magical hideaway, of course,” he looked at me as if he couldn’t believe the IQ standards he had to deal with.

“Anyway, she whispered this story to me, about the time she met Santa.”

It was getting out of hand… fast.

“Look,” I replied with utmost restraint, “Santa lives at the North Pole. There’s no way she could have met him.”

“Oh, she met him at the mall.”

This was too much. “Aren’t you being patently ridiculous? Santa was gleefully prancing about at the mall and nobody saw him?”

“Of course not!” Arya’s dad seemed to be getting exasperated with my obtuseness.

“He was in disguise. In a snowman costume. With a crooked nose. The carrot is the clue. All children know it.”


I decided it was best to simply play along.

“Don’t you think the snowman suit would be a bit too tight for Santa, considering his considerable girth?”

“Oh, dear!” Wrong question, again. I could see he was trying his level best not to roll his eyes.

“The snowman with a crooked nose is just a portal. You twist the carrot, and if you’ve been a good kid, you’re whisked away straight to Santa's Grotto… in a red, button basket.”

“A red button WHAT!?” I could barely keep my wits together.

“Not a red button,” he calmly replied. “A red, button basket. The official mode of teleportation in Santa’s kingdom.”


“So,” I took a deep breath, “If I understood correctly so far… Arya travelled to the magical kingdom of Santa and his elves… in a red, riding basket. And then?”

“She met Santa. They had cake… and marshmallows… and hot chocolate. Santa gave her a couple of gifts right away, for being extra good!

Then he lightly kissed her on the forehead… and hey, presto! She was back at our enchanted garden!”


“And you have photographic proof for all of this?”

“Yes, of course. Santa can’t go anywhere without a bunch of paparazzi at his heels. It’s all there. Incontrovertible evidence.”

“You know, if you look closely, there does seem to be a continuity lapse…”

“Sheer nonsense! Stop imagining things, and let’s get Arya ready.”

“Ready, to go where?”

“To go to the North Pole Express Mail Post Office, obviously! Christmas is coming, and Santa needs a list of all the gifts for Arya.”

He leaned forward and whispered conspiratorially, “Why your mom asks such common sense questions I’ll never understand!”

Arya smiled and nodded happily.

She was super excited to post her first letter to Santa!