As a child, I regularly sent letters to Santa Claus with my list of requests and to assure him I had been very good. Canada Post had a special service that would send a letter from Santa back to any child that wrote to him. (They still do it. If you’re in Canada you can send a letter to Santa Claus North Pole H0H 0H0!) We also used to write him a little note on Christmas Eve and leave it out for him with some milk and cookies to sustain him on his long journey. Sometimes we’d even include a carrot for the reindeer.
We went to see Santa at the mall most years when I was little enough to want to sit on his knee and tell him what I wanted for Christmas. Mind you, I was quiet enough as a child I don’t know if I ever actually spoke to him. The letters were a little more my style!
Of course I believe in Santa Claus. I have two small children at home and I want them to believe in him. It’s easier if I do as well!
Excerpt from Where the Saints Have Trod, Judith St. John, 1974 (Oxford University Press). The book is based on the author’s childhood memories (ca 1914-1924). She was my great-aunt.:
“Then there came a silence. From outside, we heard the tinkle of sleigh-bells. They gradually grew louder. There, at the back door stood Santa Claus. It wasn’t the real Santa Claus. Everybody knew that. It was Mr. Sampson dressed up to look like Santa Claus. He was jolly and laughed a great deal, but with Ho-ho’s instead of his customary Haw-haw’s. There was a present on the tree for every child. I received a doll.”
This was the first and last year pictures with Santa were this easy!