It's beginning to look a lot like....
So we are here - the weekend before Christmas. St Fillans Crescent is covered tastefully and conservatively in small white pea lights glittering (its a middle class thing - Church Grove in Burntisland when I lived there used be lit up like Las Vegas - I always fancied covering the front of my roof there with a neon Mary giving birth..you know 4 pushes and then he's out and then there is some incredible firework thing happens, and then because its a sequence it starts all over again).
Last weekend I did the shops and tried to find my tree and decorations but to no avail...they have been Fargie tidied somewhere...I suspect the unreachable attic where 5' women were never allowed to go....... The attic was actually -thankfully - pretty out of bounds to me when Les lived here, cause i couldn't navigate across the big gap between step ladder and loft floor. I wonder what else he kept up there - like Bluebeard maybe that's where he kept all of his mistresses.
I did fight with my big front garden tree and some delightfully pathetic and coloured outdoor lights so I could break the white soft focus street wear look. Must have caused great amusement for the neighbours as I tried not to show myself up while dangerously climbing very wobbly ladders - falling off them a number of times - hopelessly lasso throwing said string of lights across branches - all to no avail for about 2 hours. God, I refused to give up. The whole lot of them falling out of tree onto my face was a bit of a low point - but triumph I did in the end, even if the whole thing does now make my drive look like a car lot in East Enders and I have had worn a defiant fat lip all week to work.
Christmas tree was of course another story - one of my many 'oh God Christmas is nearly here' weeps and shrill wails was dedicated to not being able to find tree (girlie gaggy weepy blotchy snotty me) and was played out in the style of an old Bette Davis movie collapsed across my desk at work in front of my colleague Michelle. She was so moved by my distress that she suggested there and then to take me to Kirkcaldy Garden Centre to buy a real tree..and that is what we did. Then when I had found PERFECT 6 foot tree and lovely little man had wrapped it up in net for us, she then announces in her lovely Irish accent that "Brian and I are buying you that for your Christmas and that's that!" Oh God -horizontal weeps and wails, much hugging, poor Michelle just draped all over with soggy, wailing, heaving me for at least 10 minutes - other customers stampeding out the door in alarm, little man with netted tree shuffling in embarrassed fashion and gently patting my arm as Michelle guides me out the shop like you would your gran when you collect her from the hospital.
Anyway -Michelle and Brian - this tree has just been the very best Christmas pressie ever and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. Accompanying it when delivered later that night to the house (wouldn't fit in the cherry mobile!) was a lovely card that began '...to the strongest woman I know...' Michelle, I thank you and your concern for my self esteem - but lets face it 'the strongest woman I know....? I think NOT!!!
I have cried so much this week - I now know that when you cry (which is not to be encouraged in middle aged women for various reasons, including the colour you go and the horrid contortions that take your face over) the moisture actually comes from your lips. And if you cry a lot then you end up with lips that are all prune like and tiny and horrid. So best not to. I had to scuttle out (well actually hurdle out like an Olympic champion) of my works Christmas lunch when the intention for us to all stand up, cross hands and sing Auld Lang Syne together was announced -Christ!!! I'd have had no lips left - and, travelling ever hopefully, I need them!!
A lot of people at work are having a problem with my metamorphosis from Kate to Katie - no one in my home or community life seem to be having any problem at all (as I never seem to have been anything other than that) and if they do they just don't call me Katie. Actually - its because I work with lots of people who are quite cultured and therefore pronounce their 't's. They don't understand that it is supposed to be pronounced Ka-ie....and that is much easier to say than Kayteee - I wore the name Fargie for such a short time that being Brown again is like being able to take off those lovely new shoes that you adore but that absolutely are killing your feet, and putting on your old boots again. Bit of a big relief. Girls - never give your name away - we are not supposed to no matter what the Bible or more realistically a legal system that still (even in the 21st Century) defines women as pieces of property - like a chair or an ornament or a car, says. Its not romantic...its bollocks. Don't know what got into me - a whole lot of fairy tale nonsense. Tsk Tsk....might be feeling a little mad now but I absolutely must have barking crazy this time last year!
Social Networking and just seeing folk!
Amazing - I have found so many people I had lost...or haven't seen for ages and ages..... UP side is that I have found again it seems only nice people..thank goodness, although some vampire group keeps sending me messages following a comment I made about myself on FaceBook feeling like a vampire bat.....that's a bit weird. That aside (and I have draped windows with garlic just in case someone knocks in the night...huh! chance would be a fine thing!) it has been great catching up...meeting up..chatting...hugging...laughing and yes of course snottily weeping from time to time (sorry! you know who you are!!) I like.
1) Lots of boys of my own age I have lost touch with seem to have only just started having babies NOW - thats odd, I started 23 years ago and can't even begin to imagine being anything other than a Mum of young women and a step-grannie (which i still proudly am) or even a grannie though I know Robyn aint up for that idea yet....are you pet??!!! Maybe it's a theatre thing???
2) Lots of little children who I loved and fussed and probably shouted at crabbily many years ago are now very braw, very clever, very cool, much taller than me and have great skin. They live in great flats in great cities across the UK and the world, do intellectual, meaningful and creative things for work and also feel quite sorry for and protective of me. Not sure how that makes me feel!? Hmmm- my day may be slipping past..yikes! The word Grannie has slipped into this post more than once today.
3) Apart from the odd miraculous find (from across the ocean of 34 years in one case) there was never any real reason for me to have lost touch with or strayed from the side of my wonderful friends and family the way that I did. Why did I do that I am asking myself now - why did I get so distant from so many wonderful people in my life? Why did I submerge myself so in my work and my Les to the detriment of all these other relationships? Don't have the answer to that yet, but thankfully all doors still seem wide open for me, and that's a great relief...also being hugged to death.
Tomorrow I am having v v v v v special catch up with an old friend from across about 13 years worth of silly gap who I intend to hug for about 3 hours while having coffee in the beautiful Botanics and I am meeting a child who is already 7 who I know all about but have never met before, in the hot house. How special is that? Will try (really try) not to weep!!!!!!!!
Well wrapping calls (of the paper and not the cultural expression type)...ching... ching... ching... ching... ching... xxx