… on a maine-gical christmassy day

Here comes Santa Claus!

Okay, c’mon.

This is pretty cool.

Not only did Santa arrive on a lobster boat on Saturday… but his entourage included Mrs. Claus, a walking talking (and very sparkly!) Christmas tree, a few elves and… wait. Hang on a sec… let me get a little closer.

There… look!

Here in Maine, apparently, he also arrives with Olaf the snowman, a moose, and a very jovial lobster (“Mr. Claws” (no relation)).

I KNOW!

Sorry for yelling… but I know!

This past weekend, we had the Practice Grandkids up – along with their rather awesome parental humans – for a Christmas weekend.

Saturday was all about Santa!

Also it was all about them – the kids I mean.

Well, except this one moment…

He was totally looking right at me (I could barely breathe).

Santa and Mrs. Claus and the entire entourage walked through a wicked long impromptu (and super friendly) receiving line, and then they climbed into their horse-drawn chariot (okay it was a very big trolley-carriage thingie (but there were indeed horses pulling it!)). And then they headed for the library where, all afternoon, there was a line out the door of folks excited to see him and share their Christmas wishes.

Shockingly, ‘our’ kids didn’t want to wait in line (hip hip hooray!), so we did other things instead. We got snacks, headed off for their own ride in the exact same trolley-carriage thingie that Santa and the entourage had been in just an hour before, and then made our way to a late lunch that included coloring. After that, we had just enough time to go grab a hot chocolate…

Before the lighted boat parade!

As the sun went down, the lights from the buildings began to twinkle and glow. It really was a pretty magical scene. We made our way to Crazy Uncle Johnny’s (yes, the kids actually call him that) favorite place to be in Boothbay Harbor: The Red Cup cafe.

Dan (Red Cup owner) said hello to Crazy Uncle Johnny (whom he refers to as just ‘John’, but only until he reads this post), and we ordered hot chocolates and the kids got busy playing with the blocks and toys and stuff in front of the big giant picture window that looks out onto the street.

And what I am about to tell you actually happened.

It’s not, like, based on a true story.

It is a true story.

The kids were playing quietly on the carpet, and the cafe was buzzing with people and conversations, but there wasn’t another kid in sight. Then, suddenly – and I am not kidding you – we adults could see Santa and Mrs. Claus walking down the sidewalk right toward the cafe.

And they were all alone!

No entourage or anything!

It was dark out, the lights were twinkling on all the buildings, and Mr. and Mrs. C. were out for a stroll!

Then they stopped.

And knocked on the window!

And when my two Practice Grandkids looked up, Santa and Mrs. Claus smiled and waved!

The kids were shocked… like, looked at us… and then back… and at us… and then back… shocked. And then they smiled and waved and they just couldn’t believe it!

Then Santa and Mrs. Claus waved farewell, and held hands again, and walked on down the brick sidewalk and into the night.

My little Practice Granddaughter stood up, not even breathing, and fell into my arms.

Practice Grandson went back to his trucks (because he is two, and trucks are everything).

After the boat parade, we went back home.

They told Great-Granny Dingle all about their day.

And then they watched Frozen together…

While that was happening, I was hanging with Practice Kid Meighan in the kitchen.

Meig had picked up a big bag of mini-marshmallows at the store while we were out. It was her view (and a good one!) that we would need them to add to any hot chocolate we found along the way, as kids have a way of asking for mini marshmallows when they come across a cup of cocoa.

Our chatting was reminding me of Half-Kid Jack’s college professor, who had (well, probably still has) synesthesia.

Since this blog is both entertaining and educational I will tell you that ‘synesthesia’ is a condition where one sensory or cognitive pathway generates a response in a different sensory or neural pathway.

Translation: Jack’s college professor could taste words.

I told Meig I’d written a post about this, and how excited I was when Jack first told me. I begged Jack to ask his professor to ‘translate’ just one word for me, so I could know what it tastes like, and Jack agreed.

It took Jack a few days to get back to me with his professor’s response.

And I was very happy – like, smiling out loud happy – to find out what my word tasted like.

Turns out ‘magic’?

It tastes like marshmallows.

So there you go.

I told Meighan that her marshmallow purchase was perfect.

We got to see Santa and the Mrs., a Christmas lobster and moose, and elves and Olaf. And then there was a horse-drawn carriage ride. And also twinkle lights and a nighttime Christmas light boat parade… and all the joy and excitement and politenesses and smiles, from humans big and small, that seem just a little bit more accessible at this time of year.

And in my living room, two worn out kids were snuggled up under a soft, fluffy blanket in front of a fire in a house decked out for Christmastime.

It was so, so cool.

I swear I could taste the marshmallows myself.

Thanks for readin’.

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