A Cowboy’s Faith: Ice doesn’t stop arrival

buchmanhead“Santa Claus is coming to town.”

That was the announcement a couple of weeks ago, and then twice in recent days.

The day arrived, Friday after Thanksgiving, there was light snow skiff when we chored, seemingly appropriate, but freezing moisture in the air made us wonder if he’d really come.

Communication with the hostess verified: “Jolly Saint Nick will be here, or we’ll let you know.”

Throughout the day, inclement winter weather continued, but no word of Santy’s cancellation. So, we gathered ice-covered Marvelous Mae into the barn to melt her frigid coat.

Ranch crew cooperatively slid around the treacherous frozen barnyard helping get the carriage minus-fringed-top, harness and Mae into the stock trailer.

Freezing drizzle made vision difficult as we headed to help Kris Kringle get in from Wilsey, where Rudolph had slipped and sprung a back leg, when the North Pole sleigh made a rest stop.

There was plenty of time, but we didn’t want to be late, so Mae was hooked and ready to help Santa well ahead of schedule.

Then, like magic out of nowhere, Father Christmas was there anxious to go talk to the kids of Council Grove, find out if they’d been naughty or nice, and what they wanted on Christmas Eve.

The Red-Suited-Elf obviously hasn’t been following diet guidelines, because the carriage became quite lopsided as he stepped in. “Ho ho ho,” our white-bearded-passenger exclaimed as we guided the carriage-mare onto ice-covered Main.

Street lights reflecting water puddles in the potholes made a glare causing Mae to sashay more than once, even tipping the carriage a bit one time, when parking lot stripes added to the wintery glitter.

“Here comes Santa Claus,” was the official announcement. But, there weren’t more than a half-dozen cars parked street side, and only a handful of lighted stores.

Some consolation: “You’re early.” So, the Redman got a slippery historic town tour, until carolers and some kiddies arrived.

At precisely 6 o’clock, clapping greeted Saint Nicholas as he cautiously got out, shook our hand, and went right to his assigned business.

Reminds us of Job 38:30: “The frozen moisture becomes slick and hard as rock.” But, James 1:17: “Every gift cometh down from the Father, with no turning back.” Yet, Proverbs 15:3: “The eyes of the Lord are in every place keeping watch.”


030615-franksmug2Frank J. Buchman is a lifelong rancher from Alta Vista, a lifetime newspaper writer, syndicated national ag writer and a radio marketing consultant. He writes a weekly column to share A Cowboy’s Faith.

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