Friday, February 18, 2011

Merry Gentleman

Though he may not be old, his eyes sure do twinkle and his demeanor is jolly. Perhaps this is why Adam was chosen to be Santa Claus at last year's Troop Christmas party. (Or perhaps it was because I suggested it to his boss.) But the reason he agreed to do it is because he is truly a merry gentleman. He dutifully rehearsed all the names of the reindeer and fielded every 'toy' question I threw at him for days beforehand. So when the time came to put on the borrowed suit, I knew he was going to be fine. He strode into the room with a bag full of sweets exclaiming "Ho! Ho! Ho!" and when the children cried, "SANTA!" he was truly in his element.

Child after child lined up to tell him their heart's desire and have their picture taken, and when the children had all been seen then the soldiers started lining up! It seems they couldn't resist the opportunity to sit on Santa's lap. I'm not sure if they had all been 'good little boys' but Santa turned no one away. At the end, he declared, with satisfaction, that none of the children had recognized him. The best part was when one small boy tried to come in (when Santa's hat & beard were off) and said urgently that he had forgotten to tell Santa something. Santa quickly made himself presentable and went outside so that the little boy could whisper in his ear, "Good bye, Santa". I guess it's better to play it safe and mind your Ps and Qs when Christmas is on the line!

I know that Adam is not the first man in my family to have 'played' Santa. My grandfather and some of my great uncles have also taken on the role. It is so wonderfully endearing to know that Adam is willing to continue the tradition. More than that, it warmed my heart to see how happy it made him, how focused he was on each child. And isn't that the true nature of Santa after all? I know there are many theories on the origin of Santa Claus, and several sources of historical inspiration - from Saint Nicholas to Odin - but when I think of Santa from now on, it will be my husband's sweet smile I see twinkling in his eyes.

It may seem inopportune, posting something about Christmas after Valentine's Day, but shouldn't we, as Dickens urged us, "honor Christmas in [our] heart[s] and try to keep it all year"?

No comments:

Post a Comment