I’m sure that anyone who has ever worked with children will agree that the nice, quiet and polite children are rarely the ones you remember. Instead we remember the annoying children, the ones who misbehave, the ones that make us laugh, the ones with interesting or outgoing personalities and the ones who gives us a reason to remember them. Out of the hundreds of children I met whilst working as an elf in Lapland I can only remember a handful of them in some way and I could count on one hand the number of names I could match to those memories but, while my memories of most of the children fade into a blur of blue and red snowsuits, there are a select few children and moments that I will never forget.
I will always remember the first child I met outside of Santa’s cabin in the Finnish wilderness. Snowflake and I were inside the cabin debating which of us should greet the first family when the reindeer drawn sleigh appeared from amongst the snow covered trees outside the cabin. Being the closest elf to the door of the cabin, Santa asked me to go outside and greet the first child. I stepped outside to meet the quiet seven year old boy. He was an only child and had come to visit Santa with his mum and dad. His name was unusual but I can clearly remember it. That little boy is the only quiet and polite child I can really remember meeting. It’s not that he was the only nice child who visited Santa last year, it’s just that the nice children, unfortunately, aren’t very memorable and they all blur into one on the nice list. That one nice child stands out in my memory because his family were the first guests that I met on MY first day as Santa’s little helper and that’s a memory I will always cherish.