Last Seen

Deadly cold sucked the heat from my bones’ marrow as I surveyed my surroundings.

“Here,” she said.

Here? Here was a sloping field of snow glistening like icing in moonlight. Here was a field edged by elderly pines draped in snow. Here was a starry black night and the pond of a moon staring down on us. Here was a wind slicing through my gloves, shearing off my ears, and paring down my cheeks.

“Here?” I said.

I looked at the traveler. Smiling like she knew Mona Lisa’s secret, she pointed past me into the sky. As she did but before I turned, I caught sleigh bells’ tinny ringing.

Distracted by the famous sound, I turned so quickly, I slipped on the snowy field and would have fallen, had the traveler not caught my arm and kept me upright. After thanking her, I gazed through my breath toward the sound and spotted the immortal silhouette of reindeer pulling a sled commanded by a pudgy elf.

I gasped. “Santa.”

“Yes,” the traveler said.

“He was real.”

“Of course. It was on this day that he was last seen, long before his existence trickled into your dimension’s awareness.”

I nodded. Then this was was where my story begins. “I shall find him,” I whispered into the silent night as the sleigh bells faded and the wind nuzzled me. “I shall find him and bring him back.”



Instafloof (floofinition) – social media site housepets use to share information and stories.

In use: “As the people partied, drank, and became sillier through the evening, the cats and dogs slipped their iPaws out, snapped shots, and posted them to Instafloof.”

Tuesday’s Theme Music

Keeping it simple today.

I’m agnostic in my religious approach, with some new age and pagan shavings. Our house is lightly decorated for the holidays with a few Douglas Fir swags over the fireplace and front door, and a large wreath on one of the living room’s high walls. Each is lit by strands of small white lights at night. I like sitting in there and thinking of the centuries past, when darkness and cold descended, and people wondered what was to come. Gee, just like as it happens now, innit? I also sip a little mulled wine or wine with wassail, just to put me in the right mood, when I sit in there.

Perhaps it’s cheesy by some standards, but I like this rendition of Bing Crosby and David Bowie doing “Little Drummer Boy/Peace on Earth”. I was stationed in the Philippines when it came out in November, 1977, and didn’t see it for years. My assignment was due to end on December 28, 1977, and I’d go home then, and on to my next assignment, but the Flying Tigers, which was the servicing airline the military contracted, had an extra 747 available. They announced that seats were available for anyone who could get leave or process through to end their assignment, if their assignment was due to end in December.

I ended up on that flight, along with maybe a dozen other people. Landing in L.A., I found flights to Cincinnati to Charleston, WV, and took a bus for the final miles, arriving home just after a snowstorm, but still on Christmas Eve. I’d called my wife from Charleston to meet me at the bus station. That was the first she knew of my early homecoming. I think I was the only person who got off the bus.

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