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(I have published this story before. It is the only Christmas story that I have ever written so it’s time to post it again for your Christmas reading pleasure.)
This story actually happened once upon a time many years ago. I’m not a writer or teller of tales but I’ll do the best I can to tell you about a very memorable Christmas Eve and the night I met Rudolph.
It all began early one cold blustery Christmas Eve. I was arranging the logs in my fireplace getting ready to light a nice warm fire for the night. As I bent over to put the small kindling pieces and dry grass in place for that perfect one match fire a Santa hat fell down my chimney onto the top of the neatly stacked firewood. Yikes! I bumped my head on the bricks of the fireplace in my haste to backup. It nearly scared me into my next life. Yikes! Where did that Santa hat come form and why did it fall down my chimney?
I grabbed the firewood poker and gently stabbed at the Santa hat as if it might be alive when I heard a loud thud on the roof of my house and lots of soot fell from the chimney covering the firewood and Santa hat. I also heard a weak cry for help coming from somewhere way up in the top of my chimney. I bent over and looked up the chimney as best I could and I could see what looked like the hind quarters and legs of a reindeer. I bumped my head again as I scooted back out from my crouched viewing position wondering “how on earth did a reindeer get stuck in my chimney?”
This all happened before a person could call 911 for help when needed. Anyway, I lived so far out in the country that I would be dead by the time a rescue team came to save me from someone or something throwing reindeer and Santa hats down my chimney.
I ran outside to see if I could see what was on top of my roof and, lo and behold, there was a reindeer stuck in my chimney. Not just any reindeer but a reindeer with a bright shining nose that resembled a red Christmas light. As I stood there scratching my head at this strange sight the reindeer spotted me and asked me to please help pull him out of the chimney.
Not only was there a reindeer stuck in my chimney but he was a talking reindeer (I almost fainted).
What to do? Get that thing out of my chimney was the only thing I could think of. I ran back inside and put on my coat, hat, gloves and boots and grabbed the fireplace poker just in case I had to defend myself and hit the thing. I dragged my ladder over to the side of the house and placed it so I could climb up on my roof. It was snowing very hard and the wind was blowing fiercely and climbing the ladder onto the slippery roof while holding onto the fireplace poker was not an easy thing to do but I held on tight as I climbed and managed to make my way to the chimney where the strange reindeer was stuck.
“Don’t hit me, don’t hit me”, he cried as I held the poker like a baseball bat while approaching him.
“Who are you and what are you and what are you doing in my chimney?” I shouted at him over the howling wind.
He said his name was Rudolph and he was Santa’s lead reindeer and during their flight to deliver toys to all the boys and girls that night the fierce wind blew Santa’s hat off. He said that since he was the lead reindeer and it was easier for him to unhitch himself without having to stop and unhitch the whole team he volunteered to go back and get it when he saw the hat fall into my chimney. He thought my chimney looked a little small but decided to try it anyway and that’s when he got stuck.
I put my defensive weapon down, grabbed him by his legs and began to pull so I could get the strange talking reindeer out of my chimney. I pulled and tugged and pulled and tugged and just when I thought he was going to be wedged in there for a very long time Rudolph burped. It was a very loud burp and in so doing he released a lot of internal gas. He did say “Excuse me”. The gastric release allowed his fat reindeer tummy to shrink just enough to loosen the tight wedge he was in and with one more hard pull Rudolph was free of my chimney.
He thanked me for my assistance, picked up Santa’s hat, said he would be back later and took a bounding leap and flew off into the snowy night sky. He could fly (of course he could, why not)? I watched until the red glow of his nose could no longer be seen and slowly made my way back down the ladder and back into my warm house.
I did not light the fire in the fireplace that night and went to bed thinking about the strange events of the evening trying to make sense out of what had just happened. When I woke up the next morning I discovered a brand new coat, hat, gloves and boots sitting next to my fireplace with a note that said “Thank You, see you again next year.” I never saw Rudolph again but every Christmas morning I know that he and Santa had visited my house because the Snowdrop cookies and Dr Peppers that I leave next to the fireplace are always gone.
Who could I tell this story to? Who would believe me? I’m telling you now and it’s the truth.
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