Thursday, December 11, 2014

Whether Or Not To Ho-Ho-Ho by Kathy Halsey

Holiday cheer to one and all, whether that be Christmas, Hanukkah or Kwanza! A new tradition I've started is writing a holiday story, thanks to children's writer Susanna Leonard Hill! I wrote a sweet story last year,  but this year's tale features the wild weather of Arizona and Santa's big dilemma...more R&R poolside or back to snow and ho-ho-ho. Santa, we're counting on you.



Susanna's rules were to write a holiday story not to exceed 350 words where weather impacts the holidays. Good luck to all my writer friends and please read the other stories which are linked from Susanna's blog.  

Whether or Not to Ho-Ho-Ho
(word count: 335)

      Santa stretched in his lounger and sipped a smoothie. He soaked up sunshine and daydreamed about a longer vacation. But, it was December 22.
     “Ho-ho-ho. Should I stay, or should I go? I know what Mrs. Claus would say.” Instead, he flipped over and snoozed all day.
   “OUCH!” Santa stretched and looked down at his feet… blisters like scalded cranberries. 
    He hobbled to the bathroom to see what was the matter. In the mirror Santa gasped at the sight… skin redder than Rudolph’s nose…a beard crispier than burnt gingerbread. This was NOT a jolly old elf.
    Ho-ho, no. I promised Rudolph some practice runs back North. Stockings need stuffing, my red suit’s a tad wrinkled, and I’m a mess.
     Mrs. Claus called Santa the next day. “Nick, honey, only one day left. The reindeer are restless. The elves grumble and mope. Please, come back to the North Pole.”
    Santa sighed and gulped his lemonade. He jumped into his red convertible and sped to the airport while Christmas tunes cheered him on.
    Ho-ho, no snow for my flight home. Maybe I’ll make it just in the nick of time.
  “This just in,” the announcer said. “Haboob alert. Dust may delay flights out of Phoenix. Stay tuned.”
   At the gate, Santa checked in with the Icicle Express. His feet throbbed.  His skin peeled, but Christmas awaited.
    “Humbug to dust storms. To the North Pole, ASAP.”
     Santa stared as a wall of dirt rushed in. Lights flickered. Windows shattered. Darkness covered the runway.
     Santa stamped his boots. “Ho-ho, no.”
     Like Christmas magic, the sun reappeared.
     WHOOSH! Monsoon winds kicked the small plane around as it rose higher.
     Santa boomed, “Oh, the weather outside is frightful…snow would be delightful.”
     To Santa’s joy, the air turned frosty. Snow flurried. Reindeer pranced across the sky, and Rudolph joined the escort. The Icicle Express touched down and then glided to Santa’s workshop.
     “Ho-ho-ho. Let it snow. Mrs. Claus, eggnog, please. Rudolph, let’s check the flight pattern. I’m back. Let Christmas Eve begin!”




     


32 comments:

  1. Loved your story Kathy! Best of Luck!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Beverly, I appreciate you reading this. It's fun to have an audience, isn't it?

      Delete
  2. So cute! Love the nods to Cement Moore's story. The haboob is a great twist on the Christmas blizzard!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good, you caught my nod to the poem, Leslie!

      Delete
  3. I love that Santa drives a red convertible! :) Poor Santa really does need a longer vacation (and a bit more sunscreen...LOL!). Good luck on your entry!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Teresa, yes, Santa needs R&R and sunscreen. TY for reading.

      Delete
  4. My comment disappeared. I'm not sure if it's in moderation or if I hit a button, but here goes again, just in case.

    I love this story! One of my PiBoIdMo ideas involved a haboob-- something I never even knew about before moving here. Good luck with the contest!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rachel, we are representing PHX well in this contest. TY for reading my entry.

      Delete
  5. Great story! I love the inclusion of the haboob - a very Arizona weather experience. =)

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thanks Bridget for stopping by to read. Love having an audience.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I must ask my friend in AZ about the haboob. This is a whole different take on Santa's off-time. :) Great story.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lynne, these hubbubs are like being in a disaster movie.

      Delete
  8. Very cute story, Kathy! Love the AZ touch w/dust storms and the Icicle Express and all the neat descriptions!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. TY for reading this, Tina. YO are always a great support.

      Delete
  9. Dear Kathy: I enjoyed your story. I think your title could read "Weather or not!...."

    ReplyDelete
  10. You are right, Shiela. TY for reading it.

    ReplyDelete
  11. This is wonderful. Can Santa Claus ever go into retirement? He deserves it. He looks like a natural by the pool and I don't think that's lemonade he's drinking.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are correct, Sally. Guess this is not G rated.

      Delete
  12. What a fun story, Kathy. And thanks to you, I learned one thing new today - I did not know what a haboob was until I looked it up.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, thanks for stopping by, Sylvia. Google July 5 PHX haboob and yo will see an amazing sight.

      Delete
  13. What a great story, Kathy! Clever use of a haboob, Ioved it! Lots of luck to you in the contest!! xo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Elaine, if you think it's good, I feel thrilled. I wanna win something soon - gotta say. I've been in lots of contests and challenges and even to win a PB would be great. Thanks for stopping by.

      Delete
  14. Everyone needs a sunny vacation, I guess :) but maybe not quite THAT sunny! :) I hope poor Santa's sunburn and blisters didn't hinder him to much on his Christmas Eve travels. Bonus points for a weather choice that wasn't over-used in the contest, and for teaching me a word I didn't know - haboob - I love it! :) Thanks so much for joining in the fun! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for reading -- they are all great this year!

      Delete
  15. Looks like Santa needs to remember his sunscreen on his next vacation! Poor guy! Glad he made it out of the dusty mess in time for Christmas Eve! :) It was fun to follow Santa's every move, Kathy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Carrie, thanks for stopping by to read this. I appreciate it.

      Delete
  16. I kept catching the tune in my head as I read. Well done

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Gracias, Cecila. I am happy you enjoyed it.

      Delete
  17. Never thought about Santa needing a vacation. This is a great entry. GOod luck!

    ReplyDelete
  18. Patricia, I thank you for reading this. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Well done Kathy! Best of luck!

    ReplyDelete