Another week. But a very different week. Last full week of the year. Christmas Day on Friday – a big day in the UK. I had planned for a quiet week. I was due to be at home all week…trying to wind down from work for a bit of a break. But at short notice I had to get to London to meet and talk with a potential new ally on Wednesday.
Getting to London from where we live is much simpler than it used to be – there are now several direct and very fast trains…as opposed to the not many and very slow trains we used to have to endure. It means though that all the trains scheduled to arrive in London close to 9:00am are packed every morning. Good news I that my stop is early on the route so I can always get a seat.
Wednesday the trains were surprisingly quiet. It was rapidly obvious that a significant majority were trying to wind down from work for a bit of a break! There were also lots of Christmas sweaters being worn, and lots of very loud planning taking place for shopping extravaganzas. I eventually made it to London, but not before I found myself wistfully missing the angry and rude commuters who normally fill up those carriages.
My meetings Wednesday with my new ally were very positive. We realised when we saw each other than we had met once before several years ago but had not managed to identify how to work together that time. I left on Wednesday feeling more confident this time.
Thursday I also found myself again listening to arrangements for a shopping extravaganza…but this time the planning was me with my daughter! We have always gone shopping together for presents in the week before Christmas…every year for twenty one years. Fortunately, most of our extravaganza planning was in the car. As always, we had a wonderful (and successful) day out and enjoyed catching up over lunch.
And then it was Friday. A wonderful family day…albeit a bit of a blur. A very good blur…but just so much seems to happen. Gifts to open, family to love, recipes to read, food to cook, recipes to read again, meals to eat, instructions to read, board games to play, instructions to read again, wine to drink, sleep to have.
I love this time of year. The days are short and weather is never good. But it is a time for family. And it is important to take and give that time. These holidays are time to do things with families…to do things for families.
2016 will come soon enough – five days to be precise. And 2016 will be a momentous year. Every year is a momentous year. I find it interesting to sit and remember this time last year and what I was hoping for, expecting or even worrying about for 2015. And then I consider what actually did happen this year…and what didn’t happen!
2016 will be the same – every New Year is always the same. Fantastic things will occur…as will some not so good things. Some personal. Some family. Some in work. And some at home. Some we will expect and some will surprise us. Some will delight us and some will disappoint us. Some we really want…and will very try hard to make happen. Some we won’t want…and will try even harder to avoid.
The reassuring thing is that we cope. We always cope. We love and savour things we like; we handle things we dislike. We come through stronger, wiser and better.
We always do…