Saturday, December 24, 2005

That Guy In Red

I stopped in at Supermum and found a link to NORAD's Santa tracking site. I didn't know the site existed and finding it brought back warm memories from my childhood. Thanks Christine.

I remember listening to the radio reports with the latest news on Santa's position. I thought they must be true because they came from NORAD. That organization had to be efficient and observant to keep us safe from the Russians.

As I got older my belief in Santa was challenged by many things. When I saw presents being taken out of the basement on Christmas Eve my faith crumbled. I knew I had to face the fact that Santa wasn't real.

I struggled with my 'Santa Issue' for a while. I wanted to believe because I wanted the holiday to mean something. My Christian faith was slowly eroding away and Midnight Mass was more of a habit than a necessity in my family. I wondered what I would celebrate without Christmas.

What saved my faith was an article in my local paper. It was a reprint of Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. I thought about the article for a long time and decided that I could believe in some form of Santa Claus. I didn't think this was too odd for a teenager. People expected me to believe in Jesus, physics, and politicians.

I still believe in Santa Claus. Not the Disneyfied Coke-drinking one we see in business but a spirit of good cheer and gift giving. The one we sense when a gift makes a person smile. The one we sense when the urge to contact friends makes us social. My concept of Santa changes as I age and grow but it connects me to the Holiday Season and to my own childhood traditions.

Letters to Santa Claus are a holiday tradition. In Canada we use alphanumeric postal codes. For example V8W 3E8 is one of the codes used in Greater Victoria. The North Pole has its own postal code.

Here are some funny stories about Santa Claus:

The Magic Of Christmas - two elves tell us about Santa's Workshop.

Christ vs Claus: The ultimate Holiday showdown

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