I was looking for an in with Santa for next year because this year is sure to be a coal year.
I was bad.
And I’ve been even worse since Thanksgiving. So, when I read on the Internet of the dreaded Elf Flu, I knew what to do. I went straight to my desk and hacked into the government data base on my computer (Santa is a senior, after all) and found his phone number.
“Hey Santa,” I cooed. “I have a great idea.”
“What, you again? It’s coal for you this year and you know why,” Santa replied.
“I know. I’m not calling about that. The insurance covered it anyway. I have an idea to help you with your dictation because I know your elves are hit hard with the flu. I noticed there are retired elves here in Pagosa Springs and I asked them if they would help with your letter dictation and they said yes. Then maybe next year I can do better than bituminous.”
“Hmmmph. That would help a lot. Thank you, Jodi, but your good deed will have to count for 2011,” said Santa.
The Pagosa Springs second-graders’ letters arrived via a top secret bend in the Space Time Continuum and I gathered the retired elves to transcribe Santa’s dictation. Here is a holiday sampling of the correspondence. I substituted numbers for the children’s names.
Thank you for all your hard work. First, I love how you go around the world. Second, I appreciate how you spread joy all around. Next, I wish the ships would stop making oil leaks and stop killing fish for fun. Then, I would be grateful for another sister. Finally, thank you for all your hard work.
Dear No. 1:
Thank you for your letter. I was very impressed by your concern regarding the oil leaks and the sport of killing fish for fun. With so many people on our planet, we need the fish for food. You are a very smart person.
I will visit you at Christmas, but I’m sorry I can’t bring you a sister this year. This is a family matter, but I will bring you some toys.
Dear Santa Paws (a dog from a Disney Movie and a book series):
My name is No. 2 and I am 8 years old. I love snowboarding. How can Santa understand you? Hope you don’t get fleas on the way!
Dear No. 2:
Since Santa Paws cannot write, he asked me to write a letter to you. He was very excited to get your wonderful letter. It is very cold in the atmosphere when he is on the sleigh with me, so fleas should not be a bother. I understand Santa Paws because of the magic of Christmas. I can hear his thoughts and can understand him when he barks — and he can understand human talk. Have a very Merry Christmas!
Thank you for all your hard work. First, I love your bright, happy smile. Second, I appreciate how you spread joy all around the world. Next, two wishes I would really like is for my bayblade to get unstuck from under the box in my dad’s truck and be put back in my brother’s bayblade box, if you can Santa. May I also have a bayblade arena please. Then, I would be grateful for a new golden spiderman. Finally, thank you for all your hard work.
Dear No. 3:
You, too, must be a person with a bright, happy smile. You are thoughtful to be concerned not only for your wishes but also for your brother. A parent is a super person to help solve bayblade problems.
Your Spiderman wish has been passed on to the elves who help load the sleigh.
Have many fun times with your family during the holidays.
My name is No. 4. I am 7 years old. I was the one who sent you the letter. How cold is it in the North Pole? I wish I had two toys off my list. One is a hack eye came cater and an Atlantis. I wish you a Merry Christmas.
Dear No. 4:
Thank you for your letter. I will give your list to the elves.
It is outrageously cold at the North Pole, but if you dress right it is OK. Remember, there is no bad weather, just bad clothes. Have a Very Merry Christmas.
Ho, ho, ho,
My name is No. 5 and I am 7 years old. I like soccer. How do you go down the chimney? Santa I realy, realy want a TV for Christmas.
Dear No. 5:
Thank you for your letter. I love soccer, too.
I go down the chimney very carefully because there might be a fire at the bottom. My suit is fireproof just in case there is.
I will tell the elves your request. Merry Christmas!
Ho, ho , ho,
Your elves will probabley be making a lot of toys. First, I would like a big fat coat. Secondly, I also want an NBA video game. Thirdly, I also would like a happy family. Finally, please thank my dad.
Dear No. 6:
It is a very busy time for the elves. They love their job though so they don’t mind the extra hours. They are like teachers that way.
I must say, your Dad is lucky to have you. I hope your family becomes happy. Each person in a family is responsible for his or her own happiness.
I will pass your list on to the elves.
First, I know you are working very hard. Secondly, I want a jump rope. Thirdly I relly want raggedyaan and andy. Next, I want books. Then, I want a susu pet. Finily, I want the SuSu pet wii game thank you santa.
Dear No. 7:
I received your letter. I do work very hard but I get lots and lots of help from all my elf friends. I see you enjoy jumping rope. I don’t let the reindeer jump rope because it gets tangled in their antlers. There are lots of things to learn in the books you are asking for. Enjoy your Christmas.
I have lots of whishes. First, I whish that all my cousins in Cheawa would have clothes. Secondly, all the girls would like to have skirts and dresses. Thirdly, all the boys would like to have pants and shirts. Thank you Santa. Have a good trip.
Dear No. 8:
You have a lot of wonderful wishes. I will have a good and safe trip with all the wonderful reindeer guiding my sleigh. All your cousins will be happy that you asked for clothes for them. Have a wonderful Christmas with your family.
My name is No. 9. I like to play with my friends and there names are …..Are you ready for the big night? I hope you have a happy holiday.
Dear No. 9:
I am almost ready for my big flight around the world. I am so thankful that boys and girls leave me snacks on Christmas Eve because I get very hungry. You are lucky to have such nice friends to play with. Sometimes the elves and I play games like hide and seek. It is fun, especially when the reindeer can play too. Congratulations on your excellent penmanship. Keep up the good work.
My name is No. 10. I am 7 years old. I enjoy catching bugs. What is going on in the North Pole. I hope you have a Merry Christmas.
Dear No. 10:
The North Pole is a very busy place this time of year. The elves are busy in the workshop. The reindeer are practicing their landing skills. I have been busy checking my list — adding names all the time. Sadly enough we don’t have too many insects here — just snow fleas. Look them up, they are pretty interesting. Have a very Merry Christmas.
Thank you for all your hard work. First, I love your bright, happy smile. Second, I appreciate how you spread joy all around the world. Next, one wish I have for our planet Earth would be for all humans to stop polluting our water and land. Then I would be grateful for three brown and white horses. Finally, thank you again for all that you do.
Dear No. 11:
What a wonderful thing that you are an animal lover. Horses are marvelous creatures. They are a lot like my reindeer.
Having horses becomes a responsible thing. This is a major decision between you and your family. Lots of animals need our care including cats, dogs, and farm animals. I’m so glad you have a special appreciation for animals.
After assisting Santa with the letters, I think coal isn’t the worst present even if I could be good. And not because with heat, pressure and millions of years coal turns into diamonds. It is because there are cousins in Cheawa who need clothes, children in the Dominican Republic who need everything, and my own people who need medical assistance.
All I really need is love, and I have a dining room full of it.
Thank you, Elisbeth Schnell, for your fabulously knitted socks, scarves and lap blankets for our people. Everyone appreciates the endless hours you sacrifice to keep their feet warm.
Thank you to Santa’s darling elves. You know who you are.
With the closing of the downtown City Market, we remind you that we have a Senior Bus that runs on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Please call me, Jodi, at 264-2167 for details.
Are you homebound or know someone who is? Let the Silver Foxes Den help you with your meals. We have expanded our service to the more rurally isolated areas of the county and would like to help you help yourself.
These meals are the same meals prepared in our kitchen by the same cooks who prepare those scrumptious senior center meals. Our hot meal home-delivery program remains available to those closer to town four days per week, and frozen meals on Thursdays. Meals are available to people age 60-plus for a suggested donation of $3 per meal. Give me or Musetta a call at 264-2167 for further information.
Friday, Dec. 24 — Closed.
Monday, Dec. 27 — Gym Walk 12:30 p.m.; Canasta 1 p.m.
Tuesday, Dec. 28 — Gym Walk 12:30 p.m.; Meditation for Healing 1 p.m.; poker 1 p.m.
Wednesday, Dec. 29 — Blood pressure checks 11 a.m.
Thursday, Dec. 30 — Closed.
Friday, Dec. 31 — Closed.
Is it time for you to renew or buy your next ASI membership? You can purchase memberships at The Silver Foxes Den on Monday, Wednesday and Fridays from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Folks 55 and over will benefit with discounts from many local businesses, including the local hot springs. This is one of the best deals in Pagosa Springs.
This week’s menu
Suggested donation for older adults age 60-plus is $3, kids 12 and under and guests $6. Our meal program is partially funded through the Older Americans Act, United Way, and Archuleta County, Town of Pagosa Springs and other contributions and grants. These funds help support the cost of the meal which is approximately $9.75. Please note our menu is subject to change. The salad bar opens at 11:30 a.m. with lunch served from noon to 12:30 p.m.
Friday, Dec. 24 — Closed.
Monday, Dec. 27 — Vegetable soup, tuna melt, tossed salad, pineapple, apricot compote, brownie.
Tuesday, Dec. 28 — Swedish meatballs, whipped potatoes with cream gravy, cooked carrots, mixed fruit, bran muffin.
Wednesday, Dec. 29 — Baked chicken, baked acorn squash, mixed vegetables, whole wheat roll, fresh grapes.
Thursday, Dec. 30 — Closed.
Friday, Dec. 31 — Closed.