Look, what the cat dragged in! It’s Rodney, the raccoon! He hasn’t had a proper introduction in this blog because, frankly, I all but forgot about him until a moment ago. Rodney used to be my trusted company for years. He’s come on road trips and other travels with me and pretty much lives in my bag. He’s in a lot of pictures I’ve taken over the years but at some point, I just forgot about him and he went into an extended hibernation, I guess. But I came across his little Christmas hat today (which used to adorn a chocolate Santa) and thought of him. Expect to see a lot of him on here.
It is done. My final shift at work this week is through. It was pretty painful with about twice as many calls as we had in the previous few years, and most of them from Grinches and Scrooges. Quite surprisingly, there are still people in this country that forget that Christmas exists. If it was for me, we wouldn’t even be open today but when is it ever about me? My reward now are almost ten full blissful days off. Time to unwind and relax.
…or commit yourself to so many things that you’ll end up stressed and rushed anyway.
At least for today, that’ll have to be the case. I’m so glad that I don’t have a large family. As I said, I promised to do the cooking this year and it already stresses me out when it is just for my mom and me. As soon as I got home today, I got the dessert ready, only to find out that it would have been a good idea to do so yesterday. But with all the baking I’ve done all Sunday (mmhh, cookies! Happiness straight out of the oven!), there was simply no time (or space in the kitchen). Now I can only hope that my cinnamon panna cotta will be firm enough anyway and that the five hours the mandarins will spend soaking in orange liqueur will be enough. It did smell awfully good anyway. Cinnamon, mmmhhh!
This gives me the time to work on the other project I’ve, stupidly, committed myself to. I have to write a Secret Santa story for a girl on a forum. What was I thinking? In the past months, my writing has consisted of this blog, a failed attempt at NaNoWriMo and a few illegible scribbles on scraps of paper. But thing is, I’m co-admin of said forum and it’s loosely based on writing as a general theme so I would have found it a little rude to leave myself out of the Secret Santa. It wasn’t even like I could have played the no time-card. Time wasn’t an issue. I’ve had so many late shifts that allowed me to write that the 1,000 words minimum seemed almost laughable. And the prompts I was given are pretty gentle, as well. I could think of a dozen different plots. Problem was, when I sat down to write, no words would come. So in the past week or so I’ve written about 2,500 words that I’m halfway okay with. Or at least I wouldn’t feel like hanging myself from the shower rod in shame after publishing them. I’d guess that I’m about 2/3 done now. Yes, it was a real quickie, as was the idea of this Secret Santa. So I’ve sat myself down at my desk (I spend ages finding the right desk and chair, created my little writer’s nook in my living room, and I swear, I never sit here! Ever!), I’ve made myself a chococino…and then I opened WordPress and started writing this blog entry instead. Gah!
What I have noticed while typing this, though, is how rarely I get to enjoy the silence (DM-related pun intended) and how alien everyday life sounds are to me. The slow hum of the heating, the buzz of my cats purring on their pillows, people talking in the street below…I never really notice these things because there’s always either the TV or music on. And I’d make it sound overdramatic and say that Christmas is making all the poor lonely souls kill themselves because I keep hearing the sirens of ambulances but I don’t think it’s so unusual here. There’s a fire station right across the bridge from where all the ambulances and fire trucks get sent out. I suppose there’s a fair amount of sirens to be heard on any given day of the year. Still, aside from a couple not so pleasant sounds like that, I think I should try to pay more attention to the small things in life. Maybe keep the TV off more often.
Anyway…I hope all of you guys have a wonderful Christmas, whether it’s quiet and peaceful or full of the buzz that comes with being surrounded by family and loved ones. Enjoy yourselves and have a cookie or two without thinking of calories and carbs. It’s Christmas, after all!
I’ll go and
think of which book I should read next finish that story now.