Wood-chopping, harmony-singing, soup-making, fire-burning, strong-hugging time.
December 30, 2011. No comments.
Seasons Greetings and welcome to my new blog!
It’s THAT time of year.
I’m secretly proud of the way I managed to avoid the national obsession with Christmas this year, and keep it pretty much a tinsel, tat – free zone.
When I could not ignore it any longer, I found myself:
In a cottage with a roaring fire, good conversation and homemade soup. Singing songs around a table with old friends. Blasting out ‘Fairytale’ in The Star with a good pint of Ale in hand. Holding a lantern whilst the men chopped wood in the garden (and the neighbours complained because it was 1am in the morning), staying up late talking, lighting a lot of candles, cobbling together some food again that turned out to be really rather tasty, drinking Dalwhinnie and watching Downton with Dad.
What’s not Christmassy about that?
After all, I’ve had many different flavours of Christmas Days. Some unexpected ones – like the time I ran away up north and found myself listening to a brass band in a community hall, or with new friends walking along a wide golden Pembrokeshire beach to a little Welsh pub. Or the time I invited a chaos of friends into my kitchen and lots of music into my living room. The romantic one drinking champagne in bed with a boyfriend. The sweet sad one drinking tea in the nursing home with my Granny. The one that made an episode of Eastenders look like peace on earth…probably some are best just forgotten.
But I do think it’s far better to see it more as a season – as the 12 days of Christmas suggest, rather than a big build-up to one poor fragile little day. (A day when we usually fall out with our folks sometime during the cooking of dinner because they have just tackled more vegetables than we even knew existed and we forgot to get them a drink.)
This year I found out a couple of things I didn’t know:
Woman cannot live on mince pies alone. That mistletoe grows avidly on the Somerset levels. That my great-grandmother was in service (like on Downton) and when her husband came back from the war he was ‘a bit wrong’ for ever after. That they still sell kaleidoscopes in Eric Snooks. And that – after my sister collapsed, and later my auntie, during what I thought was a friendly greeting – I have a strong hug! Oh and that because some geezer in the old days got his maths wrong, Christmas falls on the 25th instead of the 21st.
But before you think I’m some kind of dyed-in-the-wool folky (what a great expression that is), I DID buy a jingle bell IPhone app and I DO intend to catch up with Ab Fab on IPlayer, and, yes, the cracker jokes were truly awful.
I think that just about covers it.