Saturday, November 21, 2009

Priority Mail 5

I took a sip of my hot chocolate.

"Here's my problem, " I began. I get so many of these letters. The bag you saw me carrying is just a few days' worth, and as we get closer to the Christmas season, I get more and more."

She nodded.

"I want to give them the attention they need," I said. "Especially the ones I can respond to in some way."

"That's like you, Santa," Nendia squeaked.

"Ah, but with so many to read, it's hard to keep track of them all, to sort them out," I said. "That takes careful reading. That takes time. And ..."

I shrugged and help up my hands.

"And you have so many other things to do," she said.

"Exactly. You see it so clearly."

She smiled. But what can you do?" she asked slowly.

"I have been thinking this over. You gave me an idea."


"Yes. You."

I leaned toward her. "I need your help."

"Me? Help?"

"It suddenly hit me that I need someone who is careful, who takes the work seriously, to help me. You are just that sort of person."

"But...but, what can I do?"

"What I need is for someone to read all the letters, carefully read them all, then to sort them into requests I do something about, ones I can respond to directly or through one of my helpers, and, of course, the ones that need some special care."

I smiled.

"Will you help me?" I asked.

"I, I will do whatever you need, Santa."

"Wonderful. I knew I could count on you."

"But what about the legs?"

"Yes," I said, "it will be hard to find someone who takes as much care as you and does such a fine job. But I'm sure that we can train someone for that job. This special requests assignment requires someone who has shown those skills."

"Oh, she said, trying to keep her smile in check. "Yes. When do I start?"

"Why not today? I will have the mail elves clear a space for you and I'll have this sack delivered back there for you to get started. Come up with whatever system works best for you. Once you begin, we can meet on a regular basis so I can act on the requests as best I can."

She seemed dazed.

"And I'll make sure there are some cookies and hot chocolate every time we meet. Thank you for your help."

"I'm honored. Oh, yes, honored."

"Good. Now, when you finish your hot chocolate, go get your things from the doll workshop and head over to the mail center."

She gulped her hot chocolate, thanked me repeatedly, and hurried out. My dear wife came in.

"Don't they already sort the letter for you at the mail room?" she asked with a knowing smile.

"Yes, but now they won't have to. That will make it easier on them."

"And on Bucky and the other doll elves?"

"Perhaps. But I also think Nendia cares so much she will do a wonderful job,a and will enjoy it even more than making legs."

I sipped my hot chocolate. "But now I'd better head back to the mail room to let them know."

I picked up the sack of special needs letters to take them back.

"There are many kinds of special needs," my dear wife said. "The world is lucky to have such a caring rogue like you."

"And I'm lucky to have caring dears like you, and Nendia."


At 3:16 PM, Blogger Mandrivnyk said...

Welcome to St. Blogs! What a fun premise!

At 6:44 AM, Blogger Lee Strong said...

Thank you.

I'd actually started this blog a couple of years ago, but I neglected it. Too busy in the Christmas season!


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