Child’s play

Tell children yesterday that am going to local cathedral city to Make A Start On Christmas Shopping; foolishly ask whether there is anything I can get for them while I’m there, and spend much of morning in Boots staring in some bewilderment at men’s haircare products.  Get rather flustered trying to stuff various apparently essential items of school uniform into own carrier bags in Marks and Spencer under watchful eye of otherwise idle shop assistant at till; she says she is very glad that she doesn’t have to touch Some People’s Bags (which, she tells me, look as though they have been Used For Carrying Potatoes).

City not yet particularly Christmassy,  and while the dreaded Christmas Soundtrack is blaring out in some shops, buskers outside are still sticking to slightly out-of-tune versions of “Let Her Go“. Manage to find quite a few things that I would like, buy one small item for my daughter, and can only hope that retailers are not mistaken in their clear belief that colouring books for adults  are the answer to everything.

Happy evening watching candidates on The Apprentice produce terrible children’s birthday parties on a budget of £2000 apiece.



Unfinished business

Weather and own mood not yet remotely Christmassy, but decide that should at least Make A Start on preparations, and head yesterday to local cathedral city in hope of finding Festive Inspiration. German Markets being assembled in almost every street, and shops clearly moving into full-blown Christmas mode; come home with three items for children’s stockings and determination to do better next time.

Rare family outing, to see latest Hunger Games  film, last night; despite much-vaunted recent Refurbishment, local cinema reassuringly unchanged (cash only, photos of Vivien Leigh and Charlton Heston on walls, and reservations sellotaped to seats), and packed with enthusiastic audience; dare to hope that it will still be there for Part 2.

Winter wardrobe practically non-existent, and am currently yearning for The Perfect Party Dress – something a) glamorous b)  comfortable and c) suitable for all possible social occasions from now until next spring. Doubt very much that it exists, but feel moved to buy December Vogue at village shop this morning (wearing dog-walking clothes and trying as usual to ignore shopkeeper’s look of polite surprise) – just in case.