I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you how weird this year has been, and all the adaptations we’ve had to make. But it’s Christmas that I’m finding extremely strange at the moment.
I know what we can do from 23rd to 27th December but it’s this run up to Christmas that I’m finding hard, mainly because it’s the bit that I like most. So I thought I would list a few things that I would probably be doing normally, and how life is now, to make it clearer in my head:
- Going to the Birmingham German market – this can happen any time from November to December. It’s normally ridiculously busy, there are groups of people drinking beer, mulled wine etc everywhere you look, Christmas music is blasting out and there is a singing moose. This year there is no German market and Birmingham is in tier 3.
- Attending my running club Christmas party at the beginning of December, normally following an extremely tough Cross Country race at Wellcombe Hills, Stratford. There have been no Cross Country races this Season and definitely no Christmas party as we are in tier 2, so can only mix with members of our own household inside.
- Thursday night late night shopping – involving lots of people milling around the High Street, the Salvation Army band playing Christmas songs outside Debenhams and packed shops. The shops only re-opened last Wednesday, last night was very quiet in town, many shops (including Debenhams) were closed and there was no band playing.
- Christmas drinks and meals out with family and friends. This can only happen if you are outside, have food, sit in groups of six and everyone loves wrapping up in Norwegian/Swedish type clothing.
- Christmas Day parkrun – so much fun, around 700 people in santa hats, having a run around Worcester Woods, followed by a quick mulled wine, brandy, rum or whatever someone has sneaked up there in a flask! There has been no parkrun in Worcester (or most of UK) since March, there definitely won’t be 700 people gathering this year, but I suspect small groups will meet and run together at different times, just because we miss parkrun.
So there we have it. Without these things that I would normally be doing, I’m finding it hard getting into the Christmas frame of mind. I’m loving the effort that everyone is going to with Christmas lights and I spent many evenings during lockdown 2.0 walking along the High Street, just to be cheered up by the Christmas trees and lights, but I feel like I’m sleep-walking into Christmas.
I know we’ll all be missing different Christmassy things at the moment but I’m hoping that like we’ve done with everything this year has thrown at us, we’ll adapt and manage to have different memorable Christmas experiences. I don’t mind admitting though that I’m looking forward to normal life resuming as soon as possible.