He slumps hunched up in the doorway, dirty red coat drawn in tightly; a vain attempt to keep out the cold.
He mutters: “Bloody supermarkets did me in. Bloody supermarkets.”
Hours pass and no sleep; forever tired, exhausted, but no sleep. The city streets empty but the street lights glare on.
He mutters: “Bloody supermarkets. No one wants craft no more. Bloody supermarkets.”
A police car passes, stops, drives back. The policeman in the passenger seat gets out.
“Can't stop here.”
The man struggles blearily up.
“Santa, Santa Claus.”
“Fucking cheek. Now fuck off.” he raises his fist but does not strike. Just threatens. Just threatens!
Santa scurries off as best he can. The policeman gets back in the car watching.
“Just some gobshite,” he says to the driver.
Fifteen minutes later and Santa is back in the doorway. There's nowhere else.
A nearby club chucks the stragglers out. They cascade drunkenly down the street kicking trash cans, cars, each other. A taxi passes and they try to flag it down, it speeds up, drives passed, they scream obscenities as it turns the corner. They spot Santa, trapped vulnerably, in the doorway…