Sitting here writing this post feels like the first sane thing I have done in about a month. Thats not because I’ve been going around doing lots of crazy stuff this past four weeks but because I’ve been doing a whole lot of nothing. On the 1st November I had an operation that rendered me neither use nor ornament and since then I have been stuck within four walls. Insane with boredom is the understatement of the century, but writing this blog gives me something to do which actually has some purpose. It gives me something to focus on apart from my caged in leg (don’t worry I will spare you the pictures.)
The Cage has already been on a month, so there is only 5 more to go. Only. The bloody thing has left me unable to move/walk/ generally get around although I do make attempts to hobble on the crutches. Now when I said I have been doing nothing thats not strictly true. I’ve been eating copious amounts of ice cream and chocolate, watching daytime telly and DVDs and reading my way through my bookcase. I’ve been a busy bee, but there is only so much of this that you can take. I’ve only been out of the house twice in a month and both of those times was to go back to the hospital for check ups. Lucky me. God only knows when and where my next venture out of the house will be. Pretty dire I know. I feel cut off from the outside world. There is no gossip to be had and the majority of the time I have no idea what day it is. Time has no meaning here. So to be honest I’m running low on blogspiration at the minute. Due to this horrifying lack of inspiration I’m not quite sure what to write about and I had a brief moment where I thought I’d lost my blogging mojo.
… I saw a Christmas tree twinkling at me from the window of the house opposite and on looking out my own window saw an impressive amount of snow on the ground. So here it is you lucky buggers, my annual Christmas post (annual because it only happens once a year folks!) Yay!
Jingle bells, Jingle bells…
What’s that? A bit early you say? Not bloody likely. At the time of posting, my iPhone ‘Sleeps to Christmas’ app informs me that there are 23 days, 6 hours, 34 minutes and 20 seconds till Christmas. Blimey, I’d best get on with it then.
Nowadays Christmas follows Halloween faster than a Saturday follows a Friday. In fact, this year would you believe, I saw Christmas decorations in shopping malls and shop windows BEFORE we’d even got halloween out the way. And pardon me for saying so but what about Bonfire Night? Remember, remember the 5th of November and all that. Is it just me or does the 25th of December come earlier every year? Not that I’m bah humbugging it, I’m just making a general point. So along with opening the first few windows of your advent calendar you get to read my Christmas post, better than a lousy santa shaped chocolate surely?
The Christmas winter wonderland certainly feels like it has come early with all this snow. Now by general rule I hate the cold and last year I cursed each individual snowflake to melt in the fiery depths of hell. But this year since I can’t go outside I can enjoy the world looking like it has received a liberal dusting of icing sugar, like a cake on a Christmas card, from the comfort of my warm home. Every cloud eh? However while looking out of my snow capped windows at all the glittering candyfloss snow that has settled on the ground, instead of just enjoying it’s beauty I have the overwhelming wish to shake it all up like a snowglobe, just so I can watch it fall again.
We all love the snow for it’s prettiness (when its fresh) and its Christmas connotations, but I know, being practically allergic to the cold myself, that getting around in it is no fun. So sorry to all those able bodied people having to get on with their day to day lives. It’s freezing, it’s dangerous, and it’s down right messy but to be awfully frank I do have to laugh at this countries apparent ineptitude in dealing with even the slightest of snowfalls. Amidst all of the things this country is having to deal with, you’d think we could manage some snow, I mean it IS winter after all. But oh no, people cant get into work, schools close, transport systems shut down, gritters run out of grit, even hospitals shut up shop and the snow not only manages to make the weather reports but also the headline news. You’d think that a lesson would have been learnt from last year, but no, it’s snowed and the country has gone into meltdown (pardon the pun.)
How on earth do other snowy countries operate normally? It’s a miracle, yet they manage it. Take for example, the North Pole (because its Christmas) If Santa & the Elves said “Frigg this I’m not going to work today its snowing” or “bollocks to driving the sleigh it’s iced over” Christmas would be in a sorry state indeed. So think on.
Anyway, I digress.
Despite my enforced incarceration I will still be tripping out to lovingly choose the Christmas tree. As of yet I’m unsure how the hell I am going to manage it but my determination knows no bounds. I WILL manage it. Because thats the rule in my house. It’s the one Christmas tradition that will not be compromised on. I’m in charge of the tree. I pick the tallest, widest most healthy looking tree (the colour of the pines and the spacing of the branches has to be just right.) I absolutely don’t care if the tree is too big for the living room and diminishes our living space by about a half. Pervious years have seen me stood in B&Q being told in no uncertain circumstances that “No we’re bloody not having the 7 foot (tall and wide) monstrosity looming over the room” with me desperately trying to argue it’s merits. I’m not happy unless the top of the tree touches the ceiling so thats what I work towards. There will no doubt be another Jemm vs Mum Christmas tree fight this year.
Once the tree is purchased its decorating time. This is when I feel my most Christmassy, when I’m adorning the tree that I so lovingly and diligently fought for (since I don’t pay for it.) I rule over the decorating of the tree with an iron fist that I will happily slap someone with if they even think about interfering. First on are the fairy lights, coloured and white ones. All in all at least 4 sets of lights go on. Now I know this could be a potential fire hazard but you should see how lovely it looks when it’s done. Next on are the baubles, in Christmas colours only-red, green, gold (I sneak a few pink ones on there too) and ornaments (glittery icicles, snowflakes etc.) Then it’s on with the gold lametta, I think this gives the tree an airy fairy glimmer, my family don’t agree and I get a bollocking every year for throwing packets of it (at least 2) over the tree, they know better than to take it off though. And voila! The finished product.
What I love about Christmas is its ability to restore childhood innocence and faith to even the most disbelieving of grown ups. I know for reasons of practicality you hate the snow but I bet you can’t help feeling just a little excited about the fact that we will more than likely have a white Christmas. Even though Christmas tends to loose some of its shine the older you get you can always capture the magic if you try. I love the lights, I love the sparkle, I love the prettiness of it all. I’m not religious, so Christmas isn’t celebrated in a religious way but I love spending the day with my family.
There are a fair few things that I hate about Christmas. The first being the Christmas crowds. I detest December shopping, probably because I’m shit at buying presents. I never know what to buy so it inevitably takes twice as long. If it was up to me unless people told me what they wanted they would go without. It’s not about the receiving it’s the giving after all, as long as all the presents are given to me! Another thing I hate about it is the post Christmas comedown. The main event has been and gone, the presents have been opened, the food has been eaten and on Boxing Day you say the same as you do every year “Well thats it for another year” and all that is left is the Christmas clean up and the task of taking down the glorious tree.
But enough of the negative. What of everyones Chrimbo traditions? What things/activities do you do every year to mark the arrival of the 25th of December? Here are some of mine:
Every single year as soon as December rocks around I look forward to curling up on the sofa, the tree glittering, the lights twinkling, opening my 116 year old copy of Charles Dickens’ ‘A Christmas Carol’ and getting lost in 19th Century London. The tale of Ebenezer Scrooge and the lessons that the spirits teach him on that cold Christmas eve night has got to be my favourite story of all time. It’s a testement to Dickens that 167 years later his story of Bob Cratchit’s plight, Scrooge’s miserly ways and the redeeming lessons of the three spirits is still being told. Without fail at Christmas I read this book, although I don’t know why I bother, I could recite it line for line.
It’s a wonderful life:
Muppet’s Christmas Carol:
The polar express:
Miracle on 34 th Street:
Each of these films are an absolute Christmas staple for me.
3. Nibbles: In my opinion, it aint Christmas if there’s no chocolate and it’s not a proper Christmas tree unless there is a tin of the stuff underneath it. Roses or Quality Street usually hit the spot but I am partial to a Terry’s Chocolate Orange or a box of Ferrero Rocher. Hint hint St Nick 😉
And that is pretty much that really. Such simple requests. On the day it’s fairly standard. Wake up, open presents, watch films, eat dinner, scoff chocs etc. But how about you? What are your Christmas traditions? I’d love to hear what customs you uphold year in year out to get you in the mood for Christmas. I’d also love to hear how you spend your day.
Oooh and one I almost forgot. It really isn’t Christmas until you’ve seen the Coca Cola lorry advert. I have, 3 times! Have you? ♪Holidays are coming, holidays are coming tra la la la la la la la la…..♪
P.s Despite it being the 1st of the month I still haven’t got little windows to open full of crimbo delights. It’s like this. I don’t care how old I am, I want a God damn advent calender!