Herself is home. Rejoice. Michael has returned from his school trip to Brussels. I think it was a good, if not always enjoyable experience for him.
I have been re-inventing myself. I went for my annual haircut and the hairdresser gave me layers. I now have the exact same haircut I had when I started college in 1986. I went on a very enjoyable shopping trip with herself looking for something for me to wear to our Christmas party. We were unsuccessful but I did get a striped chunky jumper which together with the haircut is giving strong 17 year old me energy. All I need is a pair of Docs.
Herself and myself went to the Messiah in St Patrick’s Cathedral It was nice but, it is long. Also we drove in which was extremely stressful. Christmas traffic is definitely back.
My brother has moved to France for a a couple of months. He is still alive after the drive down to the Alps, so good. He says that I should come skiing. The physio who is treating my wretched knee says that is something to aim for. I was hoping for better, more like “Of course!”
I had afternoon tea in the Westbury Hotel with my Sunday book club which is an experience I would truly recommend. However, I would not recommend it on the day that you yourself are having Christmas drinks in your house from 4.30 to 6.30. I also would not recommend having those drinks on the day of the World Cup final which goes to extra time and penalties. However.
The party – our first post-Covid – was reasonably successful. We had hoped that the young French student (who does conversation with the children) and his friends who live nearby would come and give out drinks and take coats. Sadly, due to the inability of Morocco to defeat France in the World Cup semis, they were not available (if France had not been in the final they would have been, try to keep up). We managed between the five of us but it was a bit stressful. Michael was particularly bitter having essentially spent the afternoon running up and down the stairs with coats. Dan had made a playlist for the party on Spotify which worked really well and we all cleaned like mad in advance and prepped cocktail sausages, mince pies, mulled wine and lots of beer. We encouraged people to bring their children. This worked pretty well when everyone’s children were primary school age but now that most of them are teenagers it’s a bit less successful. I felt particularly sorry for the 13 year old daughter of friends who moped on the sofa throughout. More successful was a friend’s 10 year old who ruled the roost over the assembled smaller children who had been sent to the utility room with the x-box and a large tub of sweets. Positively the best compliment I got all afternoon was from the adorable six year old daughter of a colleague of Mr. Waffle’s who told me that it was the best grown-up party she had ever been to. The children really enjoyed talking to the guests and, in particular, a gentle and charming friend of Mr Waffle’s who they found very entertaining. I am glad we went to the trouble of having it when they could all be there which was not easy. We’ll see if we can improve on the timing for next year.
Last night Mr. Waffle and I went to a carol service in the local church. Somewhat to my surprise, Michael joined us; the other two firmly refused – as Dan said in horror “What now, on a Monday?” I thought it was lovely and the church choir were really good. Mr. Waffle couldn’t get over, however, the amateur strings who joined them and were, um, less than perfect though greeted with great enthusiasm by the punters.
I have bought all the Christmas presents I am going to buy. I still have to buy food for Christmas dinner (and, curve ball, get a new inner tube for the back wheel of my bicycle which punctured on my epic trip to the physio this morning) but I am broadly ready. And yourself?