Other things I have been doing over the holiday weekend:
1. Thinking of things they should tell you before you get a dog, viz:
- you will never eat in your own home unobserved again.
- if you are prone to guilt, this will be another rich source of it. Is his life boring (A: yes, but his brain cavity is vanishingly small, so he isn't going to be reading Rilke any time soon)? Would he like a more varied diet (A: His tireless pursuit and consumption of cheap chocolate might indicate so). Why is he limping (A: Eh. Munchausens, probably)?
- That lie in? Forget it, not worth it. While you doze, someone is downstairs eating your expensive pannetone and peeing on your fridge.
- You might end up with one who finds peeing on carpets profoundly satisfying.
2. Writing a diary of our first Christmas without our kids (yes, mine finally got away after the 5am webcam review came back positive) with my friend Irretrievably Broken, who has been oxygenating my inbox with regular unguarded outbursts of ennui and joy and fury. It will be a bestseller. Yes it will, don't argue.
3. Eating and drinking exactly what I damn well like (mainly variants on tea, toasted goods, pannetone, lychees and kir royale made with €3 cava). I've enjoyed this bit, though occasionally I get the urge to cook something, just because it feels like I should. When that happens I watch more hospital drama until it passes.
4. Watching videos of S/S2011 catwalk shows for a work thing. Christ, they were depressing. How many alarmingly thin, grumpy, pinched looking girls in ugly clothes can you watch without wanting to put on some nice tracksuit bottoms and eat more pannetone? (A: Half of one, and only that much if you put the sound down so the horrible techno doesn't make your ears bleed). Are there any nice ones I am missing, fashion types? Chanel was quite pleasant, I suppose, at least it had a proper orchestra and some entertainingly spangly things to look at, and I liked one Louis Vuitton dress with irises on. Everything else (yes, Céline, I am looking at you) made me want to end my life, preferably face down in a vat of beef dripping and sequins. This is clearly to be added to the endless list of things I am not good at: writing about fashion. See also: law, dishwashing, interviewing, childcare, dogcare, driving, accounting and erm, almost everything else, actually.
5. Having lots of baths. Reading. Not watching tv. Going to the cinema (Mike Leigh: not festive; Les Emotifs Anonymes: very festive indeed). Sleeping in my clothes. Giving myself terrible manicures. Pottering. That sounds quite nice, doesn't it? It has been, actually. I miss the boys, but I know they are having a wonderful time, they have told me so very tersely before dumping the telephone, so impatient are they to get back to having a wonderful time. I don't think there's any value in me being extravagantly, hysterically sad about not seeing them if I can help it, and most of the time I can help it (by watching mawkish hospital drama, for instance, or eating more pannetone). It's been ok, really. Odd, a bit empty, rather luxurious, with occasional patches of intense sadness, but certainly no more emotionally draining than a traditional family Christmas.
6. Watching this gentleman sledging in the park:
He was about 75, all by himself, going up and down the hill on his tiny wooden sledge, using that enormously long stick to steer. It was quite my favourite sight of the whole holidays.
Anything to report, lovelies? Best present? Worst fight? How are you coping?