Shopping mall Santa is what broke the childhood myth for writer





“Katie, wake up. We’re going shopping today.  Do you want to see Santa Clause today?”


“Well, get up and get ready.  We’re leaving in a half an hour.”

I slowly got out of bed with a stomachache, full of excitement.  I was ready within 20 minutes with 10 minutes to spare.  But mom was diddling with the dishes and we ended up leaving at 10:30 instead of 10 a.m.

We got into my mom’s blue car.  I used to pretend it was a sports car even though it was a Chevy.  We arrived at Tiffany Plaza Mall.  We got out of the car and entered the big chambers of the mall.

We scurried through the hallways of the mall to find a man in a big red outfit with hair as white as snow.  I had a head rush when we got in the line.  I was getting closer and closer to Santa.  I heard babies crying and laughter though out the mall.  I heard carolers singing joyful songs.  They were signing Jingle Bells, Silent Night, Jingle Bell Rock and the Bell Song, Ding-ding-a-ling.

The line moved up and I saw one, two, no three elves helping Santa.  One was keeping the line moving, the other was taking pictures of little kids sitting on Santa Claus lap.  The third one was just standing by the exit sign.

I was getting closer and closer and then I noticed something funny about Santa.  I couldn’t make out what it was.  “Why did he look so funny?”  I had asked myself.  “He has awfully big feet for Santa.” I asked my mom, “Why does Santa have big feet?”

Mom replied, “I don’t know, because he’s a big man.”

I asked another question, “Why do men and Santa have big feet?”

“Well if you have a big body, you need big feet to hold you up.” said my mother.

My mom told me to move forward.

I was only a few people away from Santa.  I was finally up to Santa Claus.  He lifted me up on his lap and said, “Ho, ho, ho, what is your name little girl?”

“Katie, Santa.” I said.

“What would you like for Christmas?” he asked.

I sat in a daze watching him.  I finally figured out what was wrong with him.  His beard looked real funny.  It didn’t look like it was on straight.  Before I knew what I had done, I clenched my right hand on his beard and released it. “Snap!”  Santa had a big brick red color on his chin.

“Ouch!” said Santa.  “Why you little…”

“I’m sorry. I’ve been good all year.  Why am I, telling you all this?” I said, with guilt in my voice.

The elves took my picture and Santa smiled and handed me a candy cane.  It was okay.  After my mom and I left, I asked, “Mom was that really Santa?”

“What do you think?” said mom.

“I think he doesn’t really exist,” I said.

Mom said, “Katie, you’re smart.”

Page 14-Wednesday, December 22, 1993 Douglas County News-Press ©Katie Wamsley 1993