‘ Is that you all sorted for Christmas then?’ If I, in this season of goodwill, wish to be mischievous and spread misery, despair and panic then I answer ‘Yes!’ to this most irritating of questions, all the while smiling broadly. People (noticeably) ‘go off you’. You might get a very dry, ‘Oh, good for you…’ or, ‘I might have known you’d have everything done!’ or ‘Well, you’ve got nothing else to do with your time….’. I let them wallow briefly before admitting my real situation. Those who know me best say simply, ‘Aye right…pull the other one….’
Christmas shopping is a lot different to what it was when I was young(er)! A huge problem is that of how to dress comfortably. If I dress for the outdoors then I am ‘stewed’ in the indoor malls and shops. If I wear a hat, I have to ‘melt’ for the day (I shudder to think what ‘style’ lies beneath the seasonal chapeau therefore it has to stay put!), gloves are on and off constantly and feet, in boots (and other chemists!) are firing on all cylinders.
The increasing temperature in the car, when seeking a parking place, only adds to the general ‘fluster’ of the whole experience. Now, a well known motivational speaker once told his audience, ‘When you find yourself in a stressful situation, place the tip of your tongue behind your front teeth and will a solution to your problem situation.’ I use this strategy. ‘Clease can I ge’ a carking sace, clease can I ge’ a carking sace …’ well that’s what it sounds like in my car. Try it – but no laughing! Of course the best solutions to the parking problems, are a) for someone to ‘drop you off’ then come back and ‘ pick you up’ or b) (and I have become fonder of this solution) – stay at home and go online – dress as comfortably as you want and ‘park’ wherever you like! Sorted! This is such a Godsend, especially for those who are permanently or temporarily housebound.
Honestly, though, I still prefer the real shopping experience: seeing, touching, smelling and tasting the product before purchasing – so I can’t wait for the ‘scratch and sniff’ televisions and the delivery drones to bring the latest products and fashion items post haste to me for my delectation and delight. I will be parked in the comfort of my own home, tip of tongue behind my slackening teeth awaiting the arrival of my new frock and spluttering ‘Clease le’ i’ fhit nee – clease le’ i’ fhit nee….’
I once had a lovely, red, mohair jumper. One day , at school, Laetitia snuggled up to me and tentatively stroked the sleeve.
‘I think you like my jumper, Laetitia,’ I said.
‘ Aye, ah dae, an’ so dae you,’ she replied.
‘And how do you know that I like it so much?’ I ventured.
‘Cos you hid it oan last week as well .’…..