Santa is stressed

humour

Santa is stressed

This year, there is no Santa at office to fall back on: Thambidurai has refused to be Santa after the lynching he received at the hands of the employees’ kids last year. He was last seen in the narrow lane next to office, his Made-in-China costume hanging in tatters around him. He was swearing that he’d never be ‘Santa-geenta’ anymore. That is just before the dogs chased him.

8:00 pm: I have decreed that Santa will come home this year. My son is concerned about the entry: “We don’t have a chimney, mamma.” I assure him that in India, he enters from windows. He is now opening all the windows. We go scampering for mosquito repellents.

8:30 pm: “Is Santa real? Joe says he’s not,” he asks. We can’t let Joe ruin this for us. We tell our kids to never talk to Joe. We want our kids to believe in Santa forever. At least, till they have their own kids.

9:00 pm: The children leave milk and cookies on a table near the Christmas tree. Their father, who will be Santa in a few hours, tries to change the menu. “How about chips and soda?” He is told, with a smug smile, that Santa has milk and cookies. Nothing else.

12:30 am: I have woken up in cold sweat wondering if it is already morning. Santa is fast asleep. We have divided our roles quite fairly, you see. He is Santa Claus, as part of which he needs to consume milk and cookies that the kids have left on the table. By this time, ants have crawled into the cookies. Then, he needs to put the gifts under the tree and totter back to his bed. (Since I am lactose-intolerant and vegetarian, I have chosen to be tooth fairy.) I give Santa a helpful kick to get him out of bed.

12:40 am: Santa is gagging on milk and cookies. Then, he is dragging the gifts out of the kitchen cabinets. I wonder if he is fully awake. I don’t want him to place a can of flour under the tree instead of gifts.

12:50 am: I decide I can’t trust Santa. I go down as well to co-ordinate the mission. I find him sitting there,  checking WhatsApp messages. I want to hit him with the candy stick.

1:00 am: Satisfied with Santa’s performance, I am back to my room. So is he. I try to grab some sleep. I dream of Thambidurai riding a reindeer, attacking Santas who are running helter-skelter.

7:00 am: I have been woken up with loud announcements that Santa came. “He came from the kitchen window. He toppled the fruit basket over,” I am told in excited chatter. I give Santa a withering look.

7:10 am: There is excitement in the air. The children are unwrapping their gifts. And, proclaiming whose gift is better by chanting “Na... na na… na naa… My gift is better” in a nasal, sing-song manner.

“Wow! Santa picked this gift from Muniraju Fancy Kids Store?” my daughter spots the label on her doll’s box. Santa chokes on his cornflakes.

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