Sunday, 26 December 2010

Père Noël is a con*

We're having an - um - 'interesting' festive period. So far:

1. It snowed, in an unforecast-type manner. It started on Christmas Eve just an hour or so before we were due to leave to go to some friends in the next-but-one village for an apéro - our sole bit of R'n'R in an otherwise working Yule. We got halfway down the track, and had to turn back as we - or at least the car - were slipping and sliding all over the place. It's been freezing cold ever since - minus 8 when I got up this morning - and we're iced in.

2. The door fell off the oven. Probably terminally.

3. The dishwasher decided, repeatedly, that it was much more fun to empty itself all over the floor than anywhere else. Probably terminally.

4. The fridge clearly felt left out and followed suit. Probably terminally. (Okay, so we inherited them when we moved in and they're all a good 15 years old. But they didn't have to all die at once, did they?).

5. The only tardis I got anywhere near was the one in the 2009 Doctor Who Christmas special, which finally hit the screen here last night (we've not had the merest whiff of the Eleventh Doctor on France 4 yet). Yes, sorry, I'm a Doctor Who fan. You have my permission to yawn ...

6. Nobody changed my sheets.

7. Oh, and John stacked a tonne of books on top of my glasses. Definitely terminally ....

Bonnes fêtes to you too. Bah humbug.

* pun unintended, but satisfying.

Monday, 20 December 2010

Dear Père Noël ....

Dear Père Noël

How are things? I hope you're well and not too stressed out, and that Rudolph's nose is better (has he tried calendula ointment, I wonder?). I realise it's quite a number of years since you've heard from me, but I'm sure you must remember me. I was the one who always used to drink your sherry and replace it with cough medicine.

Anyway. Those days are over: I don't use cough medicine any more. I know you'll be very busy so I won't take up too much of your time, but I was I wondering - ahem - if you might be persuaded to pay me another visit. Please don't listen to anything they might tell you: I have tried really hard to be good this year - I mean look, we've even had the builders here for weeks and I've not murdered anyone. And you can't get much more gooder than that. So if you could just see your way to dropping down my chimney - that'll be the one nearest the Pyrénées, otherwise you'll get stuck in the cooker hood - here are five things that I'd really like:

1. An extra day each week; a secret one, that doesn't appear on the calendar, and if you could just slip it into a different dimension so nobody can find me when I'm sitting reading that would be even better.

2. To miraculously find clean, ironed, white Egyptian cotton sheets on my bed every night.

3. A non-white Christmas so that I can actually carry the materials that I'm working with to and from the barn without crampons and an ice axe.

4. A tardis. I would really love to be able to travel forward in time just to reassure myself that we will finish the work on this house, one day, in my lifetime. And I'd like to be able to travel backwards too, because there are a few decisions I might have taken differently if I knew what I know now. Which reminds me, while we're on that subject ...

5. Do you think it might be possible to have the gift of hindsight, only to have it in advance?

There. I think that's quite restrained, don't you? If you don't think it's enough to be worth the detour, I'd also rather like to borrow a few of your Little Helpers for a while, but I don't want to appear greedy.

Now, do you know the way to Grillou? I expect you use a SatNav these days, so just a word of warning - when you get to Rimont it'll try to send you up a muddy track and through a lake. Not useful, and the reindeer will get chillblains. I'm afraid I won't be able to leave you a glass of sherry as you just can't get the stuff here; would some rather nice Muscat de Saint Jean de Minervois do instead, I wonder?

Anyway, I do hope you all have a lovely Christmas. Please try to stay zen, and remember to breathe.


Kalba xx

Saturday, 18 December 2010

Thursday, 2 December 2010

Dogs ...

... are such strange creatures. You buy them warm beds, and fill them with blankets and pillows, and where do they want to be on one of the coldest days of the year?