Christmas is approaching fast – just ten days to go, if you’re heading for a British Christmas, nine if you’re doing things Swiss-style and celebrating on the 24th. (We usually take the best bits of both.) And apart from a small collection of cards huddling together on the sideboard, our new temporary flat is looking as un-Christmassy as it did the day we moved in, almost seventeen months ago now.
So this week I’m going to have to get to work. It won’t be a real tree again this year, but artificial ones nowadays are (whisper it) just as decorative – minus the lovely smell, of course, but also minus the mess. And this year, no mess is important.
We hadn’t expected to have two Christmases in this flat – the original plan was to move into the new one in October/November. However, the start of the build was delayed due to extensive road works on the approach road (it takes months to build a roundabout) and here we are. Festive season number two in our temporary home, to be followed immediately by a round of organising, packing, throwing out, and preparing. We’ll learn sometime in January on which date in March we’ll get the keys for the new flat.
So if anybody has any foolproof tips on How to Move House with a Minimum of Work and Upheaval, PLEASE send them my way. The fact that we’ve done it all before in the not-so-distant past doesn’t really help… This time we’ll have to unpack all the boxes and create a permanent home.
But for now I’m going to look for the Christmas tree, a swanky little plastic number we got last year. It’s probably somewhere in the cellar compartment… Or it might be in my younger son’s bedroom, which is being used as a boxroom/general dumping ground for stuff that’s sort of ready to go, or is waiting to be painted for the new flat, or possibly wasn’t even unpacked in the first place… (he doesn’t mind, he’s not here during the week and we clear a pathway to the bed at weekends)
Time to get Christmassy… and time for something else too – you can now read the second section of The Pact, the short story in fifteen parts by fifteen writers. Here it is on Nillu Stelter’s website. My part’s up first this week; I left poor Will in a bit of a pickle, but his problems were only beginning… Next Monday will see the end of his adventure – I’ve no idea what the ending is and I can’t wait to find out!