To those who can’t wait for it, it takes forever to arrive. And for those who dread it, it hurtles towards us like a Coca-Cola lorry skidding on ice, doesn’t it? The words “Christmas is coming” affect us in so many ways. Maybe to a child it’s that beacon of hope, a yearning for something outrageously exciting to desperately look forward to. However, for others, probably adults, those words can fill us with nothing but absolute dread.
“What size turkey?”, “How many extra chairs am I going to need?”, “Oh no, will I have to speak to my horrible cousin?”, “How much is it all going to cost?”
But as the Spice Girls once said: “Stop right now, thank you very much!”
Let us relax. Let us take a moment and breathe.
This Christmas could be a tough one, but we’ve coped with lockdown and we can deal with this. So, let’s keep it simple. Surround yourself with the people you love. Visit those who are on their own. If your trimmings are looking tired, there are free ones outside- just “deck the halls with boughs of holly”. Layer up, sit a bit closer to the fire. Save money by making presents- one of the best presents I ever had was a bottle of vodka flavoured with my favourite sweets, cough candies! Yes, I had a thick head in the morning, but my chest was clear. Boom boom. Another favourite present was a day out together, making memories. Simple.
I have definitely had some memorable Christmases in my time, but I have also had some disasters! Family rows, raw turkey, the lot! I will never forget travelling all the way from Salisbury, where I was playing in Panto, to my family home in North Wales, breaking down on the way. I finally arrived, eating my lunch as quickly as possible and then driving all the way back again, in time to do another show.
“Oh no you didn’t!”
“Oh yes, I did!”
And there was one Christmas, one that I don’t remember because I knocked myself out completely, when I was showing off my new Christmas present, a Chopper bike, at the age of eight. I was so busy fiddling with my gears, that I went head-on into a wall, crashed my bike, and smashed my face! What the fu… fa la la la la, la la, la, laaah!
Last year, however, was the perfect Christmas for me- just my mother and myself. No fuss, no nonsense, just enjoying each other’s company. It was beautiful. I didn’t over-shop, I definitely didn’t buy a turkey the size of a 4-wheel drive that would last until February, and the house was filled with joy, candlelight and love.
It was also the first year without a Christmas tree, and I loved that fact. Instead, I decorated the house with holly and rice lights wrapped around my cheese plant. Perfect.
I was sadly the last Christmas for my mother, but I’m so glad it was just us two. That will stay with me forever. That is the best present, right there. And, as if by magic, there shall be a newly born in the family to steal the show this Christmas, out little Christmas Rose. Therefore, this Christmas, I will celebrate the new addition to the family and raise a glass to those who have passed.
So, go with the flow, don’t over think it, don’t over-spend, don’t overindulge, just keep it pure and simple. As Hearsay once said: “Share that love.” It costs nothing, no more then kindness; two things we can all afford to give.
And so, until next time, I sincerely hope someone will come down your chimney, and give you nothing but pure joy. Oh, and Merry Christmas, naturally!
Nadolig Llawen x
P.S You’d better get the sprouts on! #JustSayin