Discovering your inner child at Christmas

A Breaffy Man in Castlebar
Discovering your inner child

I vividly remember the sense of excitement when it came to opening Christmas presents as a child. The main reason for that is that the child in me has never left and returns with particular vibrancy on Christmas morning but it was so much more magical when Santa called.
Some of the relish might have gone since that morning when Santa told my parents that I was too old to be getting presents from him.
That was an especially difficult year for my ten-year-old self. I had requested a snooker table from Santa and had sent the most pleading of letters to the North Pole on why I wanted one. I reckoned I was going to be a professional snooker player and told the great man it was a great investment so. Why a ten-year-old would take about investments is another matter.
It was with a huge sense of disappointment that I woke up on Christmas morning to discover that instead of a snooker table, Santa had brought a Fussball table down the chimney in Breaffy. I reckoned there had to be a mistake. Sure hadn’t lads in my class like Aaron Curry and Tony Golden got snooker tables from Santa before. And I considered myself better behaved than them. Of course I wasn’t, but that’s for another day.
As far as this story goes, I blame my parents for my not receiving a snooker table. They’ll deny it but I’m convinced they made contact with the North Pole to ask that a snooker table not arrive as it would take up too much room in the sitting room.
But there was still plenty of magic that morning with the other presents that came down the chimney and, on top of that, the presents that my parents and sisters gave me. Football boots, board games, videos and a Manchester United jersey. Maybe that pushed me more towards following football than snooker although not even Santa could make me into the professional footballer I often wanted to be.
Other Christmas mornings were blissful too. I still remember the big train set, the Tony electric soccer game and, one of my favourites, the child’s John Deere tractor I got when I was five. Back then all I wanted to be was a farmer and I was made up when I opened the present and saw this as Santa’s surprise for me.
I lapped the house countless times that Christmas until a family friend, Tom Gallagher from Foxford, wrapped it into the outside of the chimney trying to corner too hard. I still haven’t quite forgiven him and immediately lost interest in the farming.
The presents this Christmas still had a nice bit of magic about them even if Santa no longer calls. I hope you were reunited with your inner-child on Christmas morning too. It’s great to take a break from the big, bad world.