Even though I am almost 14 and for a long time have not thought about Santa Claus, Russia's wintry feeling brought the subject back. I realized I had a good chance to find proof, after all the North Pole was basically in front of me. I figured some people search for the Loch Ness Monster, Bigfoot, UFO?s -- why shouldn?t I take this opportunity to at least cross the Arctic and fly over an area of the North Pole. Thus, the moon casting a friendly glow, and even a show of Northern Lights decorating the horizon, Charlie and I headed due north, enough to hopefully allay any childlike fantasies, and to get on with my adult life. My decision was made mostly because we had the fuel to do it and Charlie was running very well. I set out with mixed feelings and even felt a little embarrassed. It still seemed worth it. Eventually though, after flying under a star dotted sky and over the frozen Arctic, I grew impatient. Charlie was behaving well and it was probably for the best I did not push him, so I pushed the rudders and turned him for home. Mom and Dad would be needing my help with Christmas preparations, plus I missed my little brother Charlie very much. That?s when it happened.
I felt a sharp gust of wind, not turbulence, but an updraft of wind push against Charlie. Needless to say it startled me and for the first time in a long time I felt scared. Instantly, almost as fast as the updraft occurred?it did not happen again. But what lay below was very puzzling. I first thought it was a small peninsula or an island. It was well lit; from it extended a rail road track that seemed to stretch several miles into the Arctic then suddenly stopped, or ended. I blinked several times to be sure I was staring at a Castle with flags blowing atop each tower. I circled to get another view. This time the wind gust returned and sent me off course. I tried in vain to regain my pattern, but I couldn?t find the island, the castle. I did not understand. Was I seeing things, or was it...? For the rest of my life I will be the only one who knows. I was excited to get home for a refreshing Christmas!
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