I have to admit that when I started writing the lockdown blog, I did not imagine that it would still be going full tilt by Christmas. But here we are, and maybe I will still be writing next Christmas. Nothing surprises me any more. Christmas newsletters are full of cancelled plans, and everyone is reluctant to make plans for 2021. So it’s eat, sleep, repeat.
We went out for a walk this morning. It was cold but beautifully sunny. We went on one of the lockdown 1 routes, up to the Oaks Park. About 3 miles and always something to look at. It was cold, clear and bright and we could see as far as the Wembley arch. But the funniest thing was the field mouse who stopped about one foot from me and was not to be deflected from digging in the leaves for something tasty.
So sweet. We met a couple of other walkers, but when we got to the road, it was incredibly busy, unlike lockdown 1 when there about 3 cars to be seen. I think we have reached what is known as compliance fatigue, and as long as people feel that they are not doing something severely risky, like attending a rave, they are prepared to meet their friends and family in a large park, which there is no shortage of in this area. I have however now covered up my garden furniture, as I think the likelihood of a party in the garden is fading.
I made a video call to my German penfriend his afternoon and it was just magical. 24 December is the more important day in most European countries, with presents and church services and special meals. They are of course as locked down as we are, but we walked our phones around our respective decorations and it was as jolly as maybe in the circumstances. Frohe Weihnachten!
I listened to the King’s College Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols, which I do every year if I can. It is part of my childhood and growing up time. My mother was a very devout Christian and we always went to church, midnight mass if possible, and we listened many times together to this service, usually while icing the Christmas cake or making other preparations for dinner the following day. I sang along to the carols, and I could have recited the lessons verbatim I think, it was all so familiar and ingrained to me from childhood. In recent years I have often attended the midnight mass at St Andrew’s in Coulsdon: this year I will remember times gone by.
Santa approaches with gifts now children. Hang up your stocking and go to sleep.
My Christmas tree this year is very lovely, so I will share it with you.