I find Christmas is a bit like dragging a brick across a table by a bit of elastic. Nothing happens for a long time and then bang! It all hits you at once. Christmas always seems like it’s ages away then suddenly, it’s upon us like a rabid tiger. I try and fend it off with my inner “bah humbug!” but it’s no use – it’s inevitable.
Even though it’s still November (admittedly only just), time seems to be creeping away. I keep seeing updates on Facebook from people who have already put their Christmas decorations up. Down in Cornwall, the old people’s home opposite even had them up two weeks ago.
I don’t mind the inevitable Christmas dinners. I usually have three or four – there’s the office one, the London office one, the partner one and oh yes – there’s Christmas day too. Opening presents is fun too and I enjoy seeing kids faces when they open presents from us.
The bit I find really challenging is choosing presents for everyone. My wife says – what shall we get your Mum this year? What about your Dad – and my mind goes blank. Not a good sign when they are usually the first two she asks about and that’s before I’ve chosen something for my wife. Of course we eventually get there every year, but it’s a lot of mental anguish in between all those Christmas parties!
I have a pathological hatred of wrapping presents – so much so that I bribe one of Julie’s friends to wrap mine for me every year. The princely sum of a bottle of wine usually secures her services and she wraps them with gusto!
Then there’s the question of what we do after Christmas – shall we go away or shall we stay here? Will we have a party? Who are we going to invite. With the kitchen one floor, several worktops, tiles and many doors short, I find it hard to imagine it all being ready in time.
Like everyone, I suspect I enjoyed Christmas a hell of a lot more as a child. Not that I ever believed all that Santa Claus nonsense – I quickly worked out that it was mathematically impossible for him to get to every house in the UK overnight, let alone the rest of the world. We’ve never lived in a house with a chimney and Dad’s assertion that Santa squeezed down the central heating flue sounded very unlikely seeing as every effigy of Santa looked so fat that you’d be forgiven for thinking he’d eaten a reindeer.
Still – ’tis the season and all that – Ho bloody ho!