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Father Christmas Adventures - Father Christmas and the Wolf



Unexpected Tales of Christmas Magic

Paul T Kidd
ISBN 978-1-901864-12-0 (Paperback)
Price: See buy on-line link

Extract from the Second Story: Father Christmas and the Wolf

Beware of wolves for these creatures are, as you know, wild, ferocious and dangerous. So how and why did Father Christmas become drawn into the life of one particular wolf? Was this a special animal that warranted Father Christmas’ attention? Did this wolf have a role to play in the mystery and magic that is very much part of the Father Christmas story?
These are indeed very relevant questions and I can, in my mind, imagine many readers asking them. But, as with all stories, you will have to wait for answers, for otherwise there would be no tale to tell!

I will not tarry by proceeding here to fill these pages with unnecessary detail, but will continue with haste to relay to you my story so that all will become clear, and in doing this I hope to satisfy the curiosity that I may have raised in your mind. All I will say in preparation for my tale is to briefly set the scene.

It was, as you may have already deduced, Christmas Eve. All was as it should be. Father Christmas was out and about on his special and magical annual journey around the world. Children were abed, but alas too full of excitement to sleep, and many were peeping through curtains and windows in excited anticipation, searching the sky for the familiar profile that would herald the beginning of Christmas. And, of parents, those that have such an important role in creating the Christmas magic for their little ones, they were busy making last minute preparations for the coming Christmas Day.

In the black night sky the stars twinkled as they did on every night, whether seen or not, and snow lay where it should, deep in some places, and only a scattering elsewhere. And, as for those places where snow should not be, there was none to be seen. So there you have it. All was, as I have just said, the way it should be, so there was no reason to expect the unusual that Christmas Eve night, beyond that which is normally extraordinary on such a very special evening. Let the story begin.


Father Christmas’ magic sleigh shot across the dark heavens, pulled by six majestic looking reindeer who galloped as though thundering across the ground, although in reality their hooves touched nothing at all. He travelled first south, till there was no-where further south he could go. Then, on turning around, he headed north, until here too there was no place further north he could go. Making once more a turn, he headed south for a second time. Thus, you understand now how Father Christmas travels, visiting every country, every city, every town, every village, and every house and dwelling where his coming is expected and welcome. And, as for those places where he is not expected or welcome; yes he goes there too, not to deliver gifts, but to bestow blessings, in the hope that he will, one day, be called upon to do his duty to leave presents, for as all readers know, this yearly journey was a responsibility that Father Christmas was given nearly two thousand years ago, on a very special night, the like of which the world had never seen before, and will never see again. But this tale of how Father Christmas came to be, exciting and mysterious as it is, will have to wait, for it is not for telling here.

Father Christmas continued on his way, and his journey went on for some time, although in reality it was no time at all. This, of course, is part of the Christmas magic, which you all know about and hence I will not burden you with the details of that which you have been told many times before.

So it was that Father Christmas made his way around the globe, and it was while on one of his visits to the Northern Hemisphere, in the region known as the Artic, within which Father Christmas’ secret home is also located, that the tale I wish to recount is set.
First, I will enlighten you about the wolf.  He was, as you probably have already surmised, no ordinary animal. He was an excellent hunter and he had become strong and powerful, and, with the passing of the years, as he aged and matured, he had turned out to be a very clever wolf, for he learned how best to take advantage of the people who also dwelt in the Artic lands.

These poor folk were inclined, through their actions, to provide opportunities for an effortless meal for this wolf and others like him. And the wolf in question had quickly discovered this, and it was for this reason, at least in part, that he had been very successful, and the peoples of the Artic were paying the price for his success.

What human actions am I here referring to, I hear you ask? It is of course the inclination of people to domesticate wild animals and to keep them in herds, and to use these as a food source. Unfortunately for the Artic dwellers, this also provided undemanding prey for this particular wolf.

Mostly the humans in the Artic, in those far off days, kept reindeer herds, but they also had goats, sheep and some cattle. Reindeer are hardy creatures adapted to the cold, being animals of the far North, while the other species mentioned are not so well suited to the freezing conditions, and were only kept outside during the milder weather of spring, summer and autumn. So it was that, during the winter months, these animals were housed in barns, where you would expect them to have been safe.

In normal circumstances you would be correct in assuming that, within these barns, the poor goats, sheep and cattle would have been very secure, as well as warm. But you would be wrong in this case, at least about their safety. This is because the wolf we are here dealing with, was not like any others that, hitherto, had inhabited these cold regions. In the long history of human encounters with wolves in the wild parts of the world, there had never been a wolf so determined and so clever as to continually find its way into those barns. No matter what humans did to try to block entry, this wolf still found a way in.

Thus it was that, season-after-season, year-after-year, the wolf had plundered this convenient source of food. And, season-after-season, year-after-year, the humans had waged war on this creature by setting traps and hunting any packs of wolves they could find, until the wolves in these packs were all dead. But all to no avail, for what these people did not realise was that this wolf did not belong to any pack, preferring instead to hunt alone. He was also very familiar with the ways of humankind, and always managed to avoid the snares they had set. Perhaps this was because of the scent that people left? Who knows? But, wherever there was a human scent, the wolf seems to have kept well clear, except when it came to finding a way to enter into those barns, and it may have been the concentration of human scent that enabled him to steer his path away from any traps and barriers that had been placed to prevent his entry.

With such determined efforts being made, year-on-year, to destroy this wolf, all without success, the peoples of the Artic region where this wolf dwelt, had become very desperate. Consequently, they resorted to one last measure.

Before I proceed to tell you about this, there is one other matter that you need to appreciate; otherwise you might be inclined to dismiss my tale.

We live today in a different world to that which existed at the time my story is set. Nowadays, we know a lot about the Earth and the universe, while, ironically, knowing so little. But long ago, in the time when myth, magic and superstitions were still a central part of peoples’ lives, when even adults believed in Father Christmas, understanding of the world was very limited. Thus it was that folk in those far distant times explained life through, what today, seem very simplistic notions.

This existence, this way of life, was very different from the sophisticated and complex societies in which we now live, relying as we do on science to explain the mysteries of the universe, which has in turn has led to the creation of our own myths, although few realise this. Therefore, please put aside ...


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