Santa Claus is coming! Santa Claus is coming! – at least to the village emporium. The kids were excited, but not half as excited as Finbar Humphries, the retired local butcher, who had been asked to “stand in” for the overly-busy real Santa.
The shop estimated there to be around 90 children of Santa-visiting-age and, since Santa had never made an appearance in the village prior to Christmas before, the emporium decided a tiny gift for each child was in order. They allowed for 120 children.
Meanwhile, Finbar Humphries practised his “Ho! Ho! Ho!”s and searched the internet into the wee small hours for ideas on how best to deal with children.
Saturday morning at last arrived! It seemed that as early as eight o’clock every child and and his brother waited in line.
“THERE HE IS!! THERE HE IS!!” shouted everyone when Santa appeared. “SANTA!! SANTA!!”
But Santa walked straight past. There were no “Ho! Ho! Ho!”s. He didn’t wave, and nor did the two policemen who escorted him out of the shop.
They had confiscated his home computer a bit earlier too.
Nora, from the lingerie department, filled in, distributing the gifts and wearing reindeer antlers. It wasn’t quite the same.