I hope that you all managed to get where you were going and are now safely ensconced for the duration. The run up is now over, the shops have closed and we are all locked into a couple of days of festivity.
One of the things I love about Christmas is that it gives me the chance to reflect on all the others. I love ritual and this is a time of ritual wall to wall. I am with Lala and her family and it is good to see how many inherited rituals are being observed. The carols from Kings, the baked salmon for Christmas Eve supper, the parcels around the foot of a tree that is covered with decorations kept from one year to the next in a box marked ‘Christmas Decorations’.
I still get a lovely feeling climbing into bed on Christmas Eve in freshly laundered pyjamas and picking up the collective excitement of all those anticipating the arrival of Father Christmas. And this morning, walking Tottie in the early morning park, I passed houses,( the front rooms of which I imagined festooned in hastily torn wrapping paper, seeping the faint sound of children already overexcited by the e numbers hiding in their stockings) quietly reflecting on those hectic Christmas mornings of the past and very much liking where I am now. Where I am now is quieter, deeper, sadder. At Christmas, I now have the time to feel the splinters of vacated corners of my heart.
There is much quiet joy as well. The Christmas compote for breakfast with slivers of clementine cooked in. The snow covered park with no inch spared the footprints of man and beast. The morning sun staining the windows of the East- facing high rise flats. The echoes of Dylan Thomas’ “Child’s Christmas in Wales”bouncing down the hill in time with my steps. All’s well enough in my world as I salute the happy morn.. May you too have a happy day.