CHRISTMAS – Ahhh
“Well here it is, Merry Christmas, everybody’s having fun.” Human beings are funny. We all traipse around the shops before Christmas trying to find the perfect presents for everyone on the shopping list. We hurry home and feeling exhausted, collapse in a heap, still singing the carols that each shop plays endlessly. I feel really sorry for all the shop assistants who have to listen to them every day, over and over again.
Later once all the shopping is finished, we spend hours wrapping the presents and writing little cards to friends and family. Perhaps it is a good thing that we don’t always see the recipients opening their presents: I’ve often wondered how many of them end up in a cupboard, or even given to someone else as a birthday present. But I’m always mindful of the old saying ‘It is better to give, than to receive.’
Once all the present buying is over, our minds turn to food. Christmas Food! It is totally different to normal food and we buy enormous quantities of it. I hope you’re not like me and put it in the back of a cupboard, only to find it a few weeks’ later. I think we all buy more food than we actually need…just in case…you tell yourself! We order the turkey, make or buy the Christmas Puddings: make or buy the mince pies and make or buy the traditional Christmas fruit cake with lashings of brandy poured into it. Ahhh…and the house starts to smell really wonderful.
Every year we trudge across a muddy field, dig up a Christmas tree, and place it in the corner of our sitting room and every year I promise to replant it in the garden afterwards. Well, it does salve my conscience a little. I retrieve all the decorations from previous years and whilst listening to yet more carols, decorate the tree. When it is finished I stand back to admire it.
Can you see the fairy with the squashed nose on the tree? My dog tried to eat her once and I haven’t the heart to throw her away. See this fir cone? It was painted gold by my little daughter, and this tiny stocking was knitted by my son! Look here’s a paper star with crumpled points and a miniature book: the poor tree is sagging under all these precious memories.
And before I know it…Christmas is over, it is Twelfth Night and the decorations have to come down. Oh, how I wish I could leave them there a while longer. Would some dire disaster befall me, if I did? Everything will look so bare! Without Christmas the long winter would stretch on for ever. Look, the tree is dropping some needles. Never mind dear tree, once we have planted you in our garden, you’ll soon be able to stretch your toes again.
Now where did I put all those old cardboard boxes? And is that a really fat fox I can see creeping around our garden?