2012 Totem Head Story Contest Finalist:"A Remarkable Sleigh Ride" By Isaiah, Chesterfield, MO.
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2012 Contest Finalist


A Remarkable Sleigh Ride
Written By:   Isaiah, Chesterfield, MO.

So there I was late one evening, walking along with Pointy Ears and the reindeer sleigh. Just as I thought we had gotten away without awaking anyone, an age-enhanced, fitness-challenged woman ran out of the doorway bellowing after a most thunderous fashion, "Don't just saunter alongside, as if you are downright differently abled. At least put Pointy Ears on the sleigh."

Obligingly, I obeyed, and we started of at a running pace. However, by the time we arrived at the first Eskimo village and dropped off our first packages, I had discovered that, as I get out only once a year, I was totally unfit for running so fast behind the sleigh. Just then, I caught these words from a passerby:

"See, that proves my point. No one has any respect for old age anymore. That idle boy rides like a king while his poor father can barely keep up."

Wearily, I asked Pointy Ears to get down and let me on instead. We had barely reached the first town in Greenland when we met a company of women and children.

"Why you lazy old fellow!" exclaimed several at once. "How can you ride the sleigh, while that poor little lad can scarcely keep up on foot?"

"I stand corrected," I replied good-naturedly, pulling Pointy Ears up too. After dropping off some more packages, we advanced to a small Canadian village. Suddenly an officer from the North American Committee on Pet Care stopped us and asked to see our papers of approval on institutional animal use. "Have these reindeer had proper training?"

"Officer, if we walk next to them instead of riding in the sleigh, will you let us go?" I asked nervously.

He smiled grimly. "Just this time, sir. Next time, have an assessment report ready and make sure you are following all the regulations in the use of the reindeer. Now pull up to the weigh station and let's make sure you are not overloaded."

Finally, Pointy Ears and I drew near to the United States border. When we arrived, however, we were stopped by the Boundary Guard.

"It appears that last time you came, exactly one year ago, you overstayed your visa by three hours and forty-six minutes," one of them told us. "Consequently you are under a ten-year ban. You will therefore need to return to the embassy nearest your home and file a H-346 waiver, which should take no more than six months and only costs $1550, and then, if you are approved, you may apply for a new visa to return."

Stunned, we started for home. Never before had I had such trouble crossing borders, but this December 24th was different. "What is happening in the world?" I wondered silently. Just then, Pointy Ears seemed to have recovered from the shock and said, "You know, Dad, I've been working on the sleigh lately and there is now a new function I made which might be of use."

After asking me to turn the reindeer around and start heading back to the United States border, he pulled a lever, causing the reindeer and sleigh to start flying! I was thinking of how good and useful this new function might be when we heard from the Boundary Guard beneath us, "Wait, wait! You don't have a pilot's license!"

"Ho, ho, ho!" I just had to laugh.




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