On Saturday I had an appearance in Huntsville, AL. This one was a little different than the others. It was a private party for Toyota employees and their families at The Huntsville Ice Complex. They had use of the entire venue, and I was there for 3 hours. It was different because the kids didn't just take a picture with Santa and move on. They had access to me for the entire 3 hours. That led to some great conversations that kept me on my toes:
- A little girl of about 7 kept coming back to talk with me. At one point she just stood next to me with her head on my shoulder and stroking my sleeve. The following conversation took place.
Girl: Santa. Do you believe in God?
Santa Phil: Of course I do.
Girl: Do you go to church?
Girl: There's a church at The North Pole?!
SP: Well, why wouldn't there be?
She thinks about this for a few seconds. Then her eyes widen and she smiles.
Girl: Santa. Will you come to my church tomorrow morning?!
SP: I would love to visit your church. I'll bet it's very special. But I'm afraid I have to go back tomorrow.
Girl: That's ok. Maybe next time.
- Another little girl seemed to be a little concerned about Santa's weight. (I wear a fake belly)
Girl: (pats my belly) Santa. I think you should try to lose some weight.
SP: I ate a lot of cookies to get this tummy.
Girl: Have you ever eaten a salad?
SP: Yes. I love salads! Especially with cookies sprinkled on it.
Girl: You're not helping, you know. If I fixed you a salad, would you eat it.
SP: You bet I would. But, would I look like Santa if I was skinny?
Girl: (Thinks about it) Good point.
SP: Don't worry, honey. Santa is very healthy.
- A little boy had a question about my beard.
Boy: I thought Santa had a long beard.
SP: Well, this past summer Mrs. Claus and I went on vacation to the beach.
Boy: You went to the beach?!
SP: Yes. I love the beach. Anyway, it got pretty hot so I trimmed my beard. It'll be longer when I see you next Christmas.
Suddenly the boy started giggling.
SP: What's so funny?
Boy: I'm thinking about you on a surfboard!
I love being Santa!