This story was told during the Christmas Party in 2012
Early in the morning of Christmas Eve, when it was still dark, Augustine was anxious to find his snowman again. This time Marieke the cow wanted to come along with him. Her angel clothes made her feel like she could soar over the whole world. Penelope the deer was also ready for another outing to the snow. Before they left riding towards the East, they found a carrot for a nose. Snowefie, Rainefie and Daisefie warned them to be back before dark.
The ride to the snowy mountains was pleasant. The wind was in their ears as Penelope ran over the hills and through the fields, pulling them in their wagon. It was early afternoon when the arrived in the same spot as last year. A nice hillside, lined with pine trees, and covered with snow.
Penelope took a nap in the sun, but Augustine got to work immediately and started rolling a ball. Marieke, even though she felt cold, wanted to help and took off her wings. But she couldn’t do much with her fancy angel clothes, instead she watched and encouraged Augustine, who was working very hard to make the biggest snowman yet. Soon he was standing, with stones for eyes and a twig for the mouth. Marieke added the carrot for his nose.
They sat down. Augustine leaned against the snowman, and Marieke leaned against Augustine, since he still felt warmer than the snow man.
‘Hum, hum,’ they heard after a while. The Snowman scraped his throat. ‘Is it that time of year already, again? Do I see my good friend Augustine?’
‘Yes, mister Snowman, I’m here again and I brought my friend Marieke along too. She is an angel, she thinks she can fly. Will you tell us another story?’
‘Hum, hum” let me see. ‘Where was I last? Oh yes, oh no! This is a sad story, but I must tell it, it affected me so much!’
Augustine and Marieke snuggled closer, ready for the story.
‘Last I know, I was in a main square of a village. It was Christmas time. Some kids had made me on a corner of the square, close to the big Christmas tree. The stores around the square were all lit up and their wares sparkled in the windows. At the other end was a Christmas tree stand, and the trees were coming and going, every day, for many days. One day, a little girl dressed in rags was looking at the trees. There was a little tree she kept on touching, it was no taller then her, but her mommy said there was no money for a tree this year, not even a small one. The little girl cried, but the next day she came back with a paper star that she stuck to the little treetop. And as she petted the tree, tears were rolling down her cheeks.
‘Hum,’ the Snowman scraped his throat again. ‘That was so hard for me to see. That poor little girl, and not even a little tree! I couldn’t stop myself, I started crying. Big salty tears. And they ran down my cheeks and fell on my chest. And then I started to melt. And I could not stop crying. And I collapsed!’
Augustine and Marieke did not see that now too, tears were rolling down the Snowman’s cheeks and falling on his chest. But when he choked on his tears, they looked up. It was too late. With a last big sob, his head and his body collapsed. First his head fell off and rolled right on top of Marieke. Then his belly fell smack on top of Augustine. So much snow fell on top of them, that Augustine and Marieke were stuck underneath. Their heads and legs were still sticking out, but they could not move.
‘Help,’ cried Augustine, ‘wake up Penelope, save us!’
Penelope woke up and tried to dig them out, but she wasn’t strong enough.
‘I am so cold,’ cried Marieke. ‘Surely I will freeze soon!’
Penelope sat down, feeling defeated. Augustine was crying, and Marieke went silent. None of them knew what to do.
Suddenly Marieke spoke out, ‘Penelope, I just heard the angels saying you should take my wings and fly home to Rainefie. Tell her to put on her mighty wings and come save us. There may be just enough time before I truly freeze.’ Penelope put on Marieke’s wings and flew like the wind down the mountains, over the hills and through the fields.
Augustine and Marieke waited. Augustine was fine in the cold, but Marieke couldn’t stop her teeth from clattering. She didn’t feel much like an angel anymore.
The sun was starting to set when Rainefie came flying in with her mighty wings. Penelope was holding on to her antlers.
Quickly Rainefie dug out the two Poekies. Marieke snuggled up against her, still feeling awfully cold, but Augustine got right back to work on the snowman and soon he was standing again.
‘Please mister Snowman, tell us the end of this sad story,’ asked Augustine.
The Snowman grumbled, ‘Hum, oh yes, it was the sad story. So sorry I melted on top of you, my dear friends. Actually, the story ends well. One of the village kids who saw me cry and collapse, put me back together again and asked me why I was so sad. When I told him, he smiled. He knew this girl from school, and everyone knew she was from a poor family. In the next two days he collected enough money to buy her the little tree. Oh, she was so happy when he presented her with the tree! You see, it is the little things that matter, things we do for others, for no reason, just to help.’
They were quiet for a while, thinking about the story, until Rainefie noticed the sky getting darker. It was time to go home.