Christmas Eve, 1985 (possibly 1986). I was about five years old.

It was the middle of the night and I was in bed. I woke up to go to the bathroom. As I was washing my hands, I heard a sudden noise on the roof.

It’s Christmas Eve, the middle of the night, I’m five, there’s a noise on the roof. It’s Santa. It’s definitely Santa. Santa Claus is on the roof of my house. SANTA CLAUS IS ON MY ROOF.

I immediately ran back to my room and jumped into bed. I shut my eyes as tight as I possibly could. Santa couldn’t know I was awake. That’s against the rules. If he knew I was awake, I wouldn’t get any presents.

The next morning, I woke up and at the end of my bed there was a giant stocking filled with presents. It really HAD been Santa after all! And not only that, but, at just five years of age, I’d managed to trick him into thinking I was asleep. I’d outwitted Santa. James Ward 1 Santa Claus 0.

Looking back now of course, I realise that the noise on the roof might have just been a pigeon, or an owl or something and that. A loose tile, maybe. And if I’m totally honest, it probably wasn’t Santa.

But part of me is still convinced it was.

I did meet Santa eventually. Here is a picture of us together. I’m on the right. I wish I still had a jumper like that.

Merry Christmas!

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