The Christmas Event

by Karen J Mossman

Table was set. Turkey cooking. Presents wrapped. I drank wine to celebrate.

Then I stopped. “Oh my God!” What had I done? Or rather not done.

I grab my coat, run back and grabbed my phone. Ordered Uber. Shoving my shoes in my feet, purse and phone in my shopping bag, I run outside. Coat trapped in door, I lock up as Uber rolls up.

“Where to?”

“The Trafford Centre?”

“You sure?”

Trafford Centre, Christmas Eve? He’s right. “The Mall, then.” He nodded. He drives off.

I thank him, climb out, and rush inside.  It was full of odd-balls. The four-foot man who walks with his right arm outstretched is in today. The woman with the doll in a push chair is also here. Loopy folks.

People pour around me. “Where’re am I going?” I say out loud. A man looks me oddly. I turn and collide with a mobility scooter.

“Ow! Sorry!” The owner scowls as I limp into a gift shop, dabbing blood on my  knee with tissue. What was he driving? A spiked chariot!!

“The Mall will be closing in 10 minutes. Please make your way towards the nearest till.” Says the tannoy. I groan.

I march to the counter. Sweep eyes left and right. “I’ll have one of those, one of those, that and this, please.”

“Do you want them gift wrapped?”

“Yes!” I gasp. She wraps, I wait. Anxiously I look at the door.

“Thank you so much.” Gave her a big smile and left.

Outside open the app. Uber. 5 minutes away. Your driver is Sharif.

I wait, and wait. Check phone. Glare at screen. Driving going in opposite direction. Rang him. Directed him back.

He’s ull of apologies,  “I’m new,” he explains.

“Don’t you track me? I was tracking you?”

“I was driving,” he said. Roll eyes.

Arriving home, Christmas lights on. Hubby home is back work.

“Hello darling,”he says as I fall head long through door. Parcels scatter. “One too many?”

Grr!

Presents under the Christmas tree. Smiling husband. Glass of red.

“Have we got everything now?” he asks.

“Yes,” I say.  I forgot his presents. Won’t tell him – at least not yet.

A fun short Christmas story.