It was 12th night and in the morning Ian and I packed away our Christmas decorations for another year.
Strangely enough this task, which can be onerous and always leaves the house feeling dull and a little desolate, turned out to give me the most Christmassy feeling of the blessed season. Don’t get me wrong we had a really lovely Christmas once all the stress of the preparation: planning, shopping, packing and the rest, was over that is.
We always have two trees, small of stature in the kitchen, a taller one in the sitting room. The kitchen tree is more utilitarian than the one in the sitting room, festooned with predominantly non-breakable ornaments, including a miniature wooden rolling pin, as our cats sometimes misbehave. The pink foil angel was bought for my son’s first Christmas she has a tonsure, which always reminds me of Zeppo of the Marx brothers, and she is looking her age but I couldn’t replace her, that will only happen when she finally crumbles into dust. Some of the decorations where made when Ian and I were students without a brass farthing to spare.
It was whilst I was wrapping each bauble or trinket and popping them into their boxes that I began a ramble through my memory archive remembering past Christmases and when and where we had bought them or who had given them to us over the years.
We have a wombat, a kookaburra, koala and kangaroo who made the long journey from Australia way back in the 80’s. There is a trumpet, a trombone and a French horn from Denmark. In fact, our decorations are pretty international, collected from every continent except Antarctica and not counting the ones made in China, so just remembering took me ‘Time travelling’ on a world tour with reminiscences’ of family, friends and colleagues spread across the globe.
We have one opulent bauble from Harrods, a gift, and a straw slipper from a Chinese street market. Someone even bought us a sparkly spider, he’s as big as a tarantula, not my taste, but it still finds a space next to a glass heart.
Ian’s favourite is a crystal camera a gift of a very thoughtful friend, mine is a miniature wooden hobbyhorse bough in Covent Garden many years ago.
The most poignant and treasured is a delicate glass corncob given by Rosemary our niece who died aged 31 years old in 1989.
The newest is a gift this year,made by our dear friend Rachel, the central figures of the nativity, Joseph, Mary and the infant Jesus, destined for the top of the tree next year.
The oldest and so the most precious are a glass teardrop, which was from my mother’s childhood, and two faded glass globes, which are from mine.
Happy New Year.
PS Thanks dear friends for buying my latest book ‘Red Sky at Dawning: The Time Oak’, it’s more aimed at late teens and young adults but, whatever age we can all relate to the sweet and sour and often painful transition from adolescence to adulthood that marks coming of age. Amazon.com/author/angelahmoor (Cut and paste).
It’s even stimulated new sales of my first book ‘Reflections of the old past’, I’m absolutely thrilled. Please remember to do a review on Kindle.