For the first time since I moved in here alone four years ago, after my farmer died, I felt a sudden Christmas loneliness on reading your blogs this afternoon. And it came on reading about 'decorating the tree' - something I have not done since living here. I no longer have a tree and I gave all my ornaments away to grandchildren. It brought back a certain incident from fifty years ago.
My son went to a Cathedral School which was a Boarding School but did also take Day Boys. We only lived a couple of miles from the school. The Day Boys had the option of staying at school until it was almost bed time so that they then got a mug of cocoa made with milk and occasionally my son would do this.
It was Christmas and almost the end of term. He was an only child but we did also have a Siamse Cat (anyone who has had a Siamese Cat will agree that it is almost like having a child). On this particular evening we thought we would surprise our son - we got the tree into the window, we decorated it and put on the fairy lights. It looked so pretty.
We both went to collect him from school in the car. It was very dark and we lived at the end of a cul de sac and as you came round the corner from the main road the tree was the first thing you saw in all its glory. Except when we came round the corner there was complete darkness. We had only been gone about ten minutes but in that time 'Sam-I-am' had managed to completely strip the tree of all baubles and all lights. The tree was on its side on the floor, the lights were everywhere and the first step into the room brought the crackle of broken bauble so that my husband had to go in by the back door, put on the kitchen light and go carefully into the sitting room in his stocking feet. We learned quickly that Siamese Cats and Fairy Lights are not compatible.