The Letter

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I like when fiction blends with reality. Feng often claims that I have a wild imagination and I do love to tell stories. These days, I mostly focus “inspired from true events” stories because life is interesting enough to my adult eyes, but I occasionally have long senseless conversations with Mark.

Did you know that his stuffed rabbit (the very one I nicknamed “civet”, French speakers will get the joke…) was very nice today? Doggy, on the other hand, keeps on bugging me while I was working, I report to Mark. So we punish doggy. Rabbit gets to play with cars, because he was nice. Meanwhile, outside, there is a plane flying so high it will probably reach the moon. Yes Mark, you can look out the window, let’s wash your bananas first. What? Oh, these are not bananas, these are your hands? My bad.

I swear, the house is drug free. Thanks for asking, though.

This brings me to the whole Santa thing. I can’t remember really believing in Santa Claus—I was a practical kid, the whole story sounded fishy from a logistical perspective. But I liked to believe and my parents played the part very well. It made December a fun month and it was comforting to follow the same traditions year after year.

Now, as the designated Westerner in our family, I’m in charge of Christmas. Bit of a tall order if you ask me. Where do I start? How? Oh, the pressure!

When I announced I was going to do the Santa letter with Mark, instead of praising my thoughtful mothering skills, Feng shrugged. “What does he understand about Christmas?”

“We need a letter,” I insisted. “I don’t want to buy presents just because Santa didn’t get the order.”

Feng laughed.

“Look, I have no idea how to explain Christmas” I added. “And frankly, I don’t think we need to. It just is. It’s cold, there are lights everywhere, Mark knows who Santa is—what Santa does and how he does it is irrelevant at this stage. If he wants to know, he will ask. Otherwise, he will fill in the blanks by himself. It’s like for his birthday. Does he understand the concept of being born, of a year passing by? I don’t think so. But he really enjoyed being the king for a day.”

The world is a very complex place. Feelings, traditions, rules, social obligations… How many of us know the true meaning of every bank holiday, the origin of every customs? I don’t. I just enjoy the day off and learn more about it if I feel like it. We are not religious but we are celebrating Christmas because most people here do. If we were living elsewhere, I would have no problem celebrating Hanukah, Eid of the Winter Solstice. We are mere humans, we crave rituals, cheer, bonding events.

Kids learn from us, from their environment. They can be extremely literal but also strangely perceptive. They question small details but accept the big story.

So grabbed my best fountain pen and I wrote a Christmas letter, on behalf of Mark. He added three stickers (because he is three—see, very logic) and traced the outline of his hand onto the paper. Then we folded the letter, put it in the envelop, sealed it and added a stamp.

Because Santa lives close to Canada in the North Pole, thousands of volunteers from the Canada Post Santa Letter-writing Program handle his 1.5 million letters. He has the coolest postal address too:

Santa Claus
North Pole H0H 0H0
Canada

Let’s see what he thinks of Mark’s letter!

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

Letter to Santa

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About Author

French woman in English Canada. World citizen, new mom, traveler, translator, writer and photographer. Looking for comrades to start a new revolution.

28 Comments

  1. Too cute for words. Really precious moments and you managed to captured them in these photos so well:) Thanks for sharing, Happy holidays to you and your family!

    • Thank you, and same to you!

      Taking pictures was actually an afterthought that night, I rarely take shots indoors (I don’t want to use the flash and the room was dark) but these ones turned out okay!

  2. My husband never believed in Santa and I can’t remember if I did. As much as we encourage our kids to use their imagination for playtime, we tell thinks the way they are. To us Santa, the Red Riding Hood, Batman, Spiderman and Superman, are all fantasies. Wild and fun stories. On the other hand, Jesus, his birth, death and resurrection, it’s all true and what we believe in.

    • That’s very interesting, actually. Mind you, even as an atheist, I can perfectly accept Jesus’ story, at least parts of it (the Virgin birth… not so much). But I don’t think I would tell Mark “look, this is pure fiction”. When the moment comes, I will tell him about religion, explaining that this is what some people believe in. He can believe in whatever he wants.

      Have your kids ever challenged your beliefs or asked questions about it?

  3. Uh uh, there’s a problem here… What about the Bill 101?! As Santa lives in Canada, does he speaks both english and french????!

    Scandale ! 😀

  4. Very very cute! I love Mark’s letter, I love that he doesn’t want any monsters and the photos of him are so lovely. I hope Santa does bring him lots of surprises and that he has a lovely time! I love your fountain pen – I broke mine a while ago, which was so sad 🙁

    • I lost my high school fountain pen years ago and I’m still sad about it. I bought this one in China last year, they are very popular over there (and in France). In Canada, I have yet to see anyone using them!

  5. Chiruza Canadiense on

    Builing memories that will last in your mind and in your heart forever…..

    BTW, beautiful handwriting !

    PS: next year, I might write to Santa myself….if you know what I mean 😉

  6. That’s so sweet 🙂
    I was always confused about Santa when I was growing up. Our Santa came in a helicopter and brought kids to some kids (my school organized it) instead of coming down the chimney. My mom used to tell me Santa gave her my gifts before he left for North Pole. Ahh I appreciate her effort. I’m happy that I have a few years before I try to explain Santa to my son lol.

  7. Martin Penwald on

    A postal code beginning with a “H” is in Québec. So it is highly improbable that an english letter will receive an answer.
    Just saying,.

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