The Christmas Wardrobe

I wasn’t a well-behaved kid. My family has a large selection of horror stories of me causing
havoc and despair to my sister, my parents, my nan and my dog. One story in particular
gets repeated more than others, and it happened a few days before Christmas when I was
only 4.
My mum loved Christmas almost as much as my sister and I. She would start buying toys,
games and other presents around October time and hide them away, like a squirrel hiding
nuts, for Christmas.
My sister and I knew she did this, so the trick was to find where she’d hidden them and try
to guess what they were. But my mum wasn’t stupid, she wrapped the presents up in
Christmas paper to hide their identity from us. But the shiny, attractively coloured paper
only made it more exciting.
This particular year we had no idea where mum had hidden the presents. All the usual hiding
places had been checked and double checked, in the cupboard under the stairs, in the garage,
in mum’s clothes’ drawers, out in the shed. My sister had given up. Was it possible that we
had no presents this year?
I was not ready to call off the search, and with the determination of an Everest mountaineer,
I started to climb, shelf by shelf, the North Face of my parents big wardrobe.
It was three shelves from the top that I finally caught sight of shiny red wrapping paper. It
was a present! I climbed another shelf. The very top of the wardrobe was full of colourful gifts.
If I could just climb one more shelf and feel a present...
Wait, something was wrong. The wardrobe was moving. This shouldn’t happen! I felt myself
falling back, slowly. I held tightly to the wardrobe as it came with me to the floor. Crash! My
dad came running upstairs. He said nothing. Just left me there under the wardrobe, all his
clothes, shoes, underwear, the presents, everything had been scattered around the bedroom.
He turned and slowly walked downstairs, out of the door and down the road to the local pub.

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