Phew what a day I had yesterday. Jon and I went out in less than ideal road conditions to go to see Noela and then pop into Morrisons. I say ‘pop’, but it was more like wading through treacle with every checkout having a queue that stretched down each and every aisle leading up to them. If you wanted a packet of toilet rolls or some washing powder you had to fight your way to grab them, and then fight your way back to the relative safety of the next row of aisles, then take a deep breath, gird your loins and prepare for the next offensive. I lost count how many times I had to say “Excuse me please”.
Usually at this time of year I turn into something akin to one of Monty Python’s ‘Hell’s Grannies’. When I first embarked upon the fiasco that can only be likened to panic buying in the face of some kind of impending famine or some feeding frenzy of a shiver of sharks, I was the picture of patience and politeness, but after years of bruised ankles I have become hardened to the task. Now it is head down and push that trolley in the manner that one mows the lawn. The most annoying thing though are shoppers who just have to stop in the middle of an aisle to chat. You know the kind of thing: “Hello Mrs Jones, how’s your Bert’s lumbago?” This is bad enough on an ordinary shopping trip but at this time of year it makes my blood boil – or am I just developing psychotic tendencies?
It didn’t help because I knew that I had so much to do when I got back home. It was to be an afternoon in the kitchen for me.
To begin with there was the task of tackling the washing up that had built up while my back was turned. I have no idea where it all comes from. Once that was done I could start on the real job at hand – Christmas baking. First of all there was the annual mince pie production line. Then came an extremely late Christmas cake icing exercise before what has become another festive season family tradition – making mincemeat muffins. I was lazy and did not make any mincemeat this year but had some nicely matured from 2007. The aroma that emanated from the kilner jars was intoxicating in more ways than one! Then it was the turn of the rum truffles. These are pretty easy to make but can be little tykes when it comes to coating them as you have to work like the wind before the melted chocolate hardens up again. Luckily, of course, these days there is the good old microwave, which zaps hard blocks of the sickly stuff into an even more sickly liquid in seconds. After starting at 3.00 pm I eventually hung up my rubber gloves and oven mitts at 9.30 pm. So I felt pretty chuffed with myself for achieving most of the baking with a day in hand – usually I am still at it on Christmas Eve afternoon.
And there was an added bonus to the end of my day. The fact that I found my hot water bottle in the morning meant I could go to bed looking forward to getting into warm sheets rather than ice-cold blocks of cotton polyester. It was with a smidgen of childish glee that I climbed the stairs knowing that my skin would not freeze to the sheets as your tongue does to one of those ice pops. What bliss – the simple things in life are always the best.
Well all of that was a bit girly wasn’t it? And completely off topic again. But then, thinking about it, what is really off topic? In reality, this blog was originally intended as a record of my life sharing the marital home not only with my husband but also with two other CFZ blokes. However, it is the season to be jolly so I shall refrain from any caustic or sexist comments for now. As a gesture of goodwill, I shall let it rest until the New Year dawns upon us. Then it will be “Cry havoc and let slip the tongue of sarcasm”. Moreover, with a slight glint in my eye I am quite looking forward to it.