YEP Santa Blog: My weather hell

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Do you all know what is the worst thing about delivering all the pressies on Christmas Eve? The weather!

You lot have no idea how bad it can get.

When the weather is bad it’s really difficult to juggle a sleigh load of presents and steer at the same time to make sure the reindeer stay on track.

And I have had some close shaves over the years when Mother Nature was at her worst.

From electrical storms over India, typhoons and hurricanes over the pacific to hail stones the size of basketballs a few miles from the own doorstep I have seen them all!

In fact a few years ago I had to carry out an emergency landing somewhere in west Leeds.

The wind and rain was that bad I just couldn’t see.

Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donder, Blitzen and Rudolph did their best to keep us in the air but we were being blown all over the place. Luckily we weren’t near any houses at the time otherwise my cover could had been blown.

We ended up in a field and it was pitch black. We managed to get the sleigh under some trees so the pressies were dry (don’t worry - if they had got wet I would have used special magic dust to sort it).

We waited for 20 minutes and then got back on our way. We made up the time in the air. I can tell you it was a close shave!

Oh, before I forget, Percy’s potion has worked. I feel a lot better and we are all set for our deliveries. Keep your fingers crossed for good weather. Remember - be good for your parents and carers and get some sleep. Don’t wait up for me. Merry Christmas! Ho, ho, ho!

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Every now and again I get sent a letter asking what my hobbies are (away from getting the pressies ready for Christmas Eve).

Apart from enjoying Mrs Claus’s baking (her mince pies are to die for) and going for long walks in the snow, I do have one secret passion.

It’s football!

Not a lot of people know this but I get a lot of time to watch a lot on the telly up here in Lapland (that’s down to my Head Elf Percy who has managed to secure a footie satellite link).

I suppose you are all asking which team I support? I can’t tell you that. I don’t want anyone falling out with me!

But I will say I have only ever seen them in action once – and that was on Christmas Day in 1925 while I was flying home back to Lapland.

My team drew 2-2 against Burnley and I was just a flash in the sky above the stadium (my reindeer Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donder, Blitzen and Rudolph travel fast when dinner is on the table!)

It was great as I saw a goal as well. And you could hear the cheers up in the clouds.

Oh, by the way, the mystery illness has still not cleared up.

Percy (with a little help from Mrs Claus) has persuaded me to drink a magic potion which I am convinced contains magic stardust (which helps the reindeer go faster on Christmas Eve). And before the letters start he assures me there was nothing, erm, illegal, in the potion.

I am feeling slightly better but still nowhere near 100 per cent. I will give you an update next time.

Remember – be good for your parents and carers.

****

Do you remember me mentioning about the delicate matter last time?

You know, the one involving Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donder, Blitzen and Rudolph.

I have received a number of complaints from the public about erm, their toilet habits.

You see on Christmas Eve when we are making out deliveries there are no places for the reindeer to go to the loo. That means the lads have left their mess on patios around the globe. It is not as obvious when there’s no snow on the ground but when there’s plenty of the white stuff it stands out a mile.

Last year Mr and Mrs Jones in north Leeds sent me a letter of complaint as did Mr and Mrs Smith in Dewsbury.

I can appreciate their anger but there is simply no time for me leave a letter of apology - we visited more than 5,500 homes every half and hour last Christmas! Oh, by the way mymystery illness has still not cleared up. I must admit that it’s really starting to natter me now. My head Elf, Percy, reckons he has a potion which will help clear it up. But I’m not convinced. I will give you an update next time.

Remember - be good for your parents and carers.

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It’s Percy I have to thank. Remember me mentioning him last time? He’s my Head Elf here in Lapland.

He can be really mischievous. But to be honest on this occasion he has helped me sort out a huge headache. Last time I posted I was telling you all how Mrs Claus persuaded me to put the children’s Christmas lists on the computer (as my memory is not what it used to be!). And to cut a long story short it crashed as I was putting the finishing touches to the lists. Now unknown to me Percy rang a helpline earlier this week (where in the world I have no idea!).

He wrote down some advice and then spent three and a half hours trying to fix it. Of course I had to draft in some temporary help on the toy production front but it was well worth it as you would never guess: he has only managed to get it back up and running! What a relief!

Saying that I’ve now been struck down with the illness that has knocked out all the elfs. I have done very little but sleep for the last 72 hours and more importantly my appetite has disappeared.

Normally I can cope with that but I don’t want to let the kind children down on Christmas Eve.

I am confident I will be able to make my deliveries but I’m not sure I can eat the delicious treats they all leave out for me.

The mince pies in Chapel Allerton in Leeds were particularly yummy last year and the reindeer guzzled down those carrots in Belle Isle.

That reminds me I have had a few complaints about Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donder, Blitzen and Rudolph. It’s a very delcate matter.

But I will tell you more about that next time. Be good!

*****

There’s a crisis in the Claus household – and it’s threatening to ruin Christmas!

Mrs Claus persuaded me to put the children’s Christmas lists on the computer (as my memory is not what it used to be!).

I have taken months to add all the lists (with a dash of help from my elves!) so we can be as efficient as possible making our deliveries on Christmas Eve.

But the other night I was putting the final touches to the list when my computer crashed.

It is completely on the blink. I have no idea how to fix it and time is running out.

All I can remember is that Jake in Garforth is after a PS4, Ben in York wants a Lego fire station and Holly in Normanton wants a Hello Kitty secret diary.

But as for the rest of the other children (and adults) then I am at a loss!

My head elf, Percy, reckons he has a helpline number that might help sort out the computer but I am really nervous about ringing as if anyone recognises my voice then it could attract even more bad press.

The last thing I need is a scandal at this time of year when I need to be concentrating on getting all the toys ready for my deliveries.

And we are running behind as it is: two thirds of my helpers have been struck down with a mystery virus. They have all been laid up in bed. And the cold outside the toy production cabin doesn’t help. It gets really cold around here at this time of year. If you stay outside for too long you get icicles on the end of your nose. Mrs Claus is worried that I might get poorly next. She worries too much.

More on that and my computer worries next time.

Be good!

****

Update: Five arrests after Bradford to Leeds police chase crash