We sit here, all of us looking into the fire and listening to the wind blow against the flap of the Tee-Pee. It's quiet. Another Christmas in the wilderness. Made it through the year, not sure how. I stopped writing some time back because I realized as I looked back and read it, that I suffered severe anxiety and trauma from those events, and writing about it all only increased my panic attacks later...
Actually, I had lost my Survival Journal down by the creek and Winter Hawk found it again today. So here we are, Christmas Eve and suddenly, Winter Hawk jumps up and claps excitedly.
"Whoop, whoop, jingle, jingle, click, click, lip pop?!"
I draw a long breath and Crazy Elk smacks his own forehead.
"Yes, Winter Hawk, For the umpteenth time, Santa will be coming tonight!" I shout.
He claps again wildly, dancing around in place, humming 'Deck the Halls' then stops and looks at us. "Whistle, click, whistle" he says, nodding his head with a serious look on his face, his eyes cut to Crazy Elk"
"I not been naughty!" yells Crazy Elk. Winter Hawk looks up with a "tsk, tsk" sound...And as suddenly as he stopped before, he started again. He claps and leans in close now, "Cheek flip, click, lip pop, whistle"
"Aw, Big bear, we have to hear again? Him do this every night since Thanksgiving!" moans Crazy Elk.
Heck, all I want is silence, but that isn't going to happen. "Let him tell it. It keeps him occupied and we don't have to worry about putting out a fire, rebuilding the tee-pee or stitching something or someone closed....Namely me"
Winter Hawk claps some more, giggling now with excitement as he starts to act out and tell the story. I will spare you the clicks and whistles...
"Long ago, in a galaxy far, far away, there was a town in the North Pole. I'm not sure how they got a whole town inside that pole, but they did!...I think it was a pretty big pole and a pretty small town...So there was Santa and Mrs. Santa and a bunch of Elves working on toys, and building houses and ironing and making sandwiches and stuff...And there was one little Elf named Jake. Jake had a speech impediment, so he couldn't say Santa, he just called him Thanta...Jake was Thanta's, I mean, Santa's favorite elf, and the other elves knew it, so they didn't like Jake, and he always had to clean the reindeer stalls....One time, Santa asked, 'Where's Jake?' and another elf said, 'He is in the barn giving Blitzen a laxative!' Blitzen had gotten all stopped up from eating all those Christmas cookies...Anyways, every year, Santa has the elves polish his sleigh up real shiny, make sure the reindeer have been for a walk and done their business and then he loads his toys in his big red bag to deliver to everyone...except Crazy Elk...but one year, Jake got his coat caught on the sleigh when Santa took off. He was yelling "THANTA THANTA!!!", But Thanta, I mean Santa, couldn't hear him over the ZZ Top playing on the 8 track tape deck in the sleigh. The end"
Winter Hawk claps excitedly and sits down, rocking back and forth with a huge grin.
"That not same story you tell yesterday. Story change every day since Thanksgiving! And Crazy Elk do get gifts!" Yells Crazy Elk, now completely frustrated. "And what about Jake?!? You not even tell complete story! You insane!"
Winter Hawk shrugs, "Click, whistle"
"Him still work at stables?!?" Crazy Elk just shakes his head in disbelief and grumbles to himself.
"Wait..." I finally say. "What about the baby Jesus"
"Lip pop, click, whistle, click, Martinez" replies Winter Hawk.
"No, he does not live in Mexico and his last name is not Cortez!...Jesus, not JESUS!" I say loudly.
"Ohhhhh....click" says Winter Hawk. "Click, whistle, lip smack, whistle, click"
"Well...That does makes sense. What are babies doing at the North Pole and they really are too young to understand about reindeer poop...But I am talking about the REAL meaning of Christmas here" I reply.
So I stand, and I tell them the greatest story ever told...
"Two thousand years ago, on a night that was probably as cold as tonight, a man and his wife arrived in the little town of Bethlehem. The Governor was taking a census, to see who all was in the land, and Bethlehem was where Joseph, the husband was from. but there were a lot of people in town for the same reason, and when they tried to get a room at the inn, the inn keeper told them they did not have any left. he felt bad for them though and told them if they wanted, they could stay in the stable with the animals..."
"Click, Whistle!" yells Winter Hawk
"No, not like Jake! now be quiet and let me finish!"
"...So it was there that the woman, whose name was Mary, was ready to have a child. but this was no ordinary child...This baby was the Son of God. And when it was time, she delivered the child and Angels spoke to shepherds who were watching their flocks of sheep in the fields, and told them that the baby had been born and that they would find him laying in the manger in Bethlehem. The Angels told them this was no ordinary child, too. That this baby was the Savior of the world. So they went to see the child and worshiped him, and went about telling all that they had seen. This is why we celebrate Christmas. To remember the birth of our Lord, Jesus Christ that night so long ago."
I sit down now, pleased with myself at the telling of the story. I look over and Winter Hawk and Crazy Elk are silent now. I imagine they are pondering the story to themselves.
Winter Hawk jumps up, grabs a stick and runs outside. I yell after him, somewhat startled for a moment, "What are you doing?"
"Click, click, whistle, click, lip pop, whistle!" came the reply from outside.
Crazy Elk chuckles and I smile at him and he at me. I guess re-writing your Christmas message to Santa, in the dirt, so he can take your gifts to the baby Jesus...and give Jake a pay raise, is a very nice thought on Christmas Eve.