Friday, December 9, 2011

Can you hear the magic of the bell?

My Bella (11) thought herself hilarious as she shouted these words over and again on the train ride to the North Pole last night.

We rode the Polar Express which is a train built in 1928.  We boarded in Williams, AZ on the rim of the Grand Canyon and drove straight through to the North Pole.

It is very cold in the North Pole this time of year. The reindeer are cross with all the laborious labor they are meant to perform in December, so in a rude rebellious manner, they leave their droppings absolutely everywhere underfoot.  It is stinky and messy and steamy warm.

Also, elves are just everywhere.  We hit a few, I think. With the train. I saw one flying through the night sky with the force.  He was lovely in his little elf suit.  Pity. There are always casualties.  Elves are attracted to very bright lights and every year when the magical Polar Express pulls into Santa Land filled to the brim with pajama wearing children, at least three elves jump out in front of the train in an over-zealous attempt to greet the children and the pretty pretty light.  Poor little creatures.  It's lights out for them now, isn't it.  May they rest their tiny elfin souls in peace.

I thought my Isabella hilarious as well with all her obnoxious screaming. Her age is to blame.  It was her way of informing the world that Santa is a child's game and she is much too old and wise to play into the fantasy but she still wanted to participate.  (She is not, however, too old for enormous Christmas snicker doodles and hot chocolate, thank goodness.)

I especially found Bella humorous when Santa Claus boarded the train in his fluffery red suit and beardy bearded face.  At this juncture in time my Bella, screamed at the top of her lungs with believable feigned panic in her high pitched voice,

"SANTA!!! OH IT'S SANTA EVERYBODY!! HE'S HERE!!! HE'S REALLY REALLY HERE!! ON THIS VERY TRAIN!!  AHHHHHH! "  She grabbed at her own face and pulled her own hair to show her extreme excitement at his coming. 

I encouraged her by laughing loudly and sincerely.  Bella is a funny little lady of mine.

Santa greeted every boy and girl and Mum and Daddy on the train with a smile and a bouncing belly like a bowl full of jelly.  He gifted us each with a magical bell.  A sleigh bell from one of his reindeer.  One might suppose that Dancer and Prancer are quite pissed off by the lack of jingle and jangle in their reins as a result of St, Nick's generosity at their expense.

Maya was terrified at first of the idea of having to speak to Santa.

"I don't want to sit by the isle.  I'm scared of Santa.  Never mind.  Move Tyson.  I want to sit by the isle.  I changed my mind, Mama.  I'm not afraid."

On and on she vacillated until Santa actually boarded the train.  Then she screamed in earnest.

"AHHHHHHHH!!! SANTAAAA!!  Mama, I'm scared."

But the closer he approached the more comfortable she became.

This is the way of things, isn't it?  Like the frog in the pot.

Maya was mortified when the train conductor insisted all passengers sing Happy Birthday To Maya. I was elated. My sweet little Maya Papaya is the my lovey dove.

I so enjoyed spending time with my family on an old rickety train. We were read The Polar Express by the man in a funny hat.  He showed us the pictures.  We were served hot cocoa and cookies. We sang Christmas carols.  I was interested to hear just how many people cannot carry a tune in a bucket or on a train nor in the rain nor in a box nor with a fox.  Some people just cannot sing, Sam I am.

Santa even gave ME a bell.  I shook it and shook it.  I shook with wild abandon,


I feel sorrow in my heart for those who have lost their sense of wonder.

Do YOU hear the magic of the bell?