—  Ken and Vesta  —

Wedding and Portrait Photography

541 773-3373

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Santa’s taylor elves hadn’t gotten around to making him a new Irish Santa suit yet, but he couldn’t fault them, because they not only had him to outfit, but all of the elves too. And then there was Mrs. Claus. She liked to look good in her clothes too. And besides, he really liked his old Irish suit, so it was what he wore when he set out with Rudy and Crew for Dublin on his Seventeenth Day of Christmas.

He liked Dublin’s Temple bar, but he wanted to visit one of the new Christmas Pubs first. There were two of them and they were owned by a pair of twin sisters, who everybody called the Christmas Twins, because they loved everything about Santa, which accounted for their names and the names of their pubs, The Christmas Pub One and Two.

He settled on going to Number One, because, well, because it was Number One.

The door was locked, the place looked empty, so he went in, because there’s no such thing as a lock that can keep Santa out.

“Hey, we’re not open for business yet. Grand opening is Christmas Eve.”

“Really?” Santa turned to see a blue-eyed girl, who looked a little elfish, whose frown changed to a smile when she figured out who he was.

“You’re him?”

“I am.” He gave her a smile back. “I’m sorry to barge in like this. I thought you were open already.”

“We got delayed.” She sighed. “We ordered a pair of life sized sculptures of you for the bars and one got damaged during shipping, so we won’t have the replacement till the twenty-third and we don’t wanna open without them.

“Life sized? Of me? In my Irish suit?” He pulled on his beard. “I’d like to see one.”

“We have one at The Christmas Pub Two. It’s across town, but it’s locked and closed up. However, I’m guessing that’s not a problem for you.”

“I won’t harm a thing.”

“Then you’re welcome to go and look."

“Thank you.”

“I wish my sister would’ve been here. She would have loved meeting you.”

“I think she’s meeting the man of her dreams in Hawaii right about now.”

“You’re kidding?”

“He’s got a brother.” He smiled and headed for the door.

“Santa, wait!”

He turned and she blew him a kiss.

“Safe travels,” she said.

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At the Christmas Twin’s other pub, he marveled at the likeness of himself. They’d gotten his Irish Santa Suit down to a T. And they’d even done a bang up job on his likeness.

He smiled, because it was a good thing, a pub named after Christmas. And not one, but two.

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Out on the street again, he decided to go for a walk and several hours later, after having met people too numerous to mention and having received enough compliments on his green Santa suit to last him well into next winter, he decided it was time for a Corona, so he turned his walk toward the Temple Bar.

But he didn’t make it, because as he was passing a pub called, The Shakespeare’s Head, a girl ran up to him saying, “You can’t come in Santa.”

“Why not?” He hadn’t really wanted to go in. He was headed for the Temple Bar. But now, all of a sudden, more than anything in the world, he wanted to go into the pub named for the head of the Bard.

And curiously, the girl stood aside, without giving him a clue as to why he should stay out.

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At the bar, he asked the girl tending it if she had Corona and she gave him a look, then said, “We have Guinness.”

He was about to say he’d have one, when the Big Guy rang. “Did you happen to notice that the girls in your bar have hardly any clothes on.”

“What?” Santa thought back to God.

“Take a look around.”

Santa did.

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“Hey, Santa,”  A girl who was wearing a red checkered blouse which barely contained her ample breasts said.

“What’s going on?”

“We’re having a bikini contest.”

“Ah, maybe I’m in the wrong pub.”

“You’re welcome to stay.”

“I think I’ll be going.” He got up from the bar, was about to make his way to the door, when, like a lightening bolt, his Santa sense went off the charts.

“Are you okay?” Red checked blouse said.

“I’m fine.’ He scanned the room, then settled his eyes on a girl wearing an outfit which left nothing to the imagination. There was something about her. He felt a connection, like he’d never felt with a mortal. At first he thought, maybe she was an angel, but no angel would be dresses so scantily.

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And she for sure wasn’t one of Lucy’s. An aura of good surrounded her like none he’d ever seen on a mortal.

He moved toward her, came up from behind. “Do you know who I am?”

“Sure I do,” You’re Santa Claus, the real one,” she said, without turning around. At first he thought she was embarrassed about what she was wearing, but he quickly figured out that wasn’t it. She was trying to tell him, without saying so in words, that she could identify him without turning around. She saw him, but not with her eyes. 

“Who are you and why are you here?” Santa said.

“I’m Santa,” the girl said, turning to look him in the eyes. Really, that’s my name. I was born on Christmas Eve and though my real name’s Evangeline, I’ve been called Santa since the day I was born. So, it’s my name.”

“Why am I drawn to you?” Santa said. “What’s the connection?”

“Maybe just my name,” she said. “I don’t know, but for most of my life I’ve had visions of you and Mrs. Claus and your elves and your wife’s pets and your secret village up at the North Pole. That’s why I was able to capture your likeness in the sculptures I designed for the Christmas bars.


“I designed the sculptures and the Christmas Twins had them made by a firm in Limerick.”

“I don’t understand.”

“Neither do I, but I just go with the flow."

“And why are you here?”

“Duh.” She smiled at him. “Because the winner gets five hundred pounds and I need the money.”

“I can give it to you.”

“Don’t be silly,” she said. “I’m not ashamed of my body. It’s the way God made me. If I was ashamed of it, it’d be like I was ashamed of God.”

“She’s got a point,” the Big Guy told him.

“Sure I do,” Santa the girl said.

“You heard that?” Santa said.

“I guess I did.”

“That was a private thought,” Santa said. Then, “Do you know who thought it?”

“I can guess.”

“How about it, Big Guy, should she be here or should I intervene?”

“You call him that?” Santa the girl said.

“Normally, I’d have no problem with a bikini contest,” God thought, “but there are a couple young men here who don’t know it yet, but a little later, after they’ve had too much to drink, will get out of hand and your new friend will be their victim and we don’t want that, not tonight. Not after you’ve just met.” God sighed a sigh so heavy Santa felt it to his core. “Close it down, Santa,” God said. Then, “We’ll talk later.”

“So that’s it,” Santa the girl said. “You’re just gonna tell everyone they have to go home. You can’t do that.” But clearl,y she knew he could.

“God very rarely asks anything of us. But when he does, it’s a good idea to do what he wants.”

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A girl had just taken the stage and was about to announce that the contest was ready to start, when Santa boomed out. “Hey, everybody, I think it’d be a good idea if you all went home now and called it an evening.”

Till just then, the pub had been alive with normal bar sounds, people talking, the clinking of bottles and glasses, music in the background. Now it turned dead quiet. Even the music stopped.

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“How about it, everybody,” the girl on stage said. Santa Claus says we should all go home, what do you think about that?”

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A group of young men shouted their displeasure and for about thirty seconds, maybe forty, Santa allowed it, then he waved his hand in an Obi Wan Kenobi gesture and they quieted right down.

“It’s time to go.” He didn’t have to wave his hand twice. They went. And in short order the bar was empty, save for the two Santas.

“Just like the Jedi,” Santa the girl said.

“Well, I’ve been doing it a lot longer, so I think you should say the Jedi do it, just like Santa.” He laughed at his joke.

Then, Santa the girl vanished. One second she was there. The next she was gone.

“You took her?” Santa thought up to the Big Guy.

“She was going to die tonight,” God said. “Now she won’t. She never will. And those young men will get a second chance. Let’s hope they make the most of it."

“Who was she?”

“Somebody too good to walk the Earth.”

“And now?”

“And now she has wings.”

“Wings without having to die.” Santa smiled. “Imagine that.”

“Yeah,” God said, “Imagine that.”

“But who was she?”

“I’ll tell you when you’re ready,” the Big Guy said. Then he added, “You should get a room, because you’ll be needed in Dublin Town come the ‘morrow.”

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A half hour later, after he’d informed Rudy that he’d be another night, he checked into a five star hotel, took a shower, then climbed into a warm bed.

“Who was she?” he thought upward.

“I’ll tell you on Christmas Day. It’ll be your Christmas present from me.” He laughed, then said, “God out.”

And Santa went to sleep.

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