Surprise Santa Visit

A vignette about the last threads of childhood

Written 9/1/1994 with revisions 7/17/2021

Photo by Tima Miroshnichenko from Pexels

I was probably six or seven years old and it was a week before Christmas.

My mom and dad told my brother and I that Santa Claus was coming to our house!!! To see US! Mom was making Fairy Bread, which was baking in the oven.

Fairy Bread is a family recipe and is a brown dessert bread that contains cherries, dates, and nuts and is best eaten warm from the oven with butter melted and drizzled over it. It got its name because it was anonymously left on my grandparents kitchen table when my mom and her sister were kids. A recipe card was left with it. They supposedly do not know who left the food or the recipe.

All of a sudden we hear a vehicle pull into the driveway — not a sleigh nor sleigh bells. Instead of a large, red sleigh we saw a four-door blue Escort. Then, a sizable red mass pops out. My brother and I raced to the front door to open it for our special guest. We asked the supposed “Santa” where the sleigh, Rudolph, and additional reindeer were, whereupon he answered, “I left them in the North Pole.”

I knew he was an imposter but it didn’t ruin my spirit. “Santa” was really my dad’s friend and co-worker, Mike. We gave him some Fairy Bread, had a chat, imparted our wish lists, and then he departed for the North Pole via blue, four-door Escort. Then, I got to be the cool kid for a couple days at school.



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Librarian and Information Specialist by day. Queer writer of poetry, sensuality, personal experience, and health by night. Instagram @tolbert_on_medium #BLM✊🏿