Posted by Tania Kindersley.
I do not feel very Christmassy at all. I really want to get into the Christmas spirit but I cannot currently locate it. This afternoon, I rather grumpily put up some decorations whilst watching the racing and stumped about in a bah humbug way.
I’m going to say something really stupid now, which only certain people will understand. I feel really, really sad that this is the first Christmas without my dog.
I always miss my dad on a Saturday, because I watch the ponies, and that was what he did. I’m getting used to missing him on a Saturday; it’s stitched into my week now. But today I had a sudden violent regret that the Duchess was not here.
She was a dog; she did not even know what Christmas was. But she loved this time of year. She was a real snow dog, and she looked so elegant against the whiteness with her shiny black coat and her regal bearing.
I suppose Christmas was always going to be difficult this year. I’m doing the whole I’m fine thing, because mostly it is true. I am fine. There are moments when I am happy, and moments when I am sad, which is the very definition of human life.
When the sorrows come and beat me up, I feel slightly foolish, as if I should butch up a bit. I duck my head and hope no one will notice. I wonder if I should write about it, and then I think: no, don’t tell them that. Give them soup and politics and jokes. There must be jokes. Or at least mildly amusing idioms. Or something. Not the dull old truth, which is so universal that it is worn thin with use. And yet, at the very same time, I think all I ever want is the truth.
I think: I am a crazy old bundle of paradox and I used to think I knew something about the human condition and now I have to admit I know nothing.
Anyway, I think that’s why I’m a bit up and down at the moment. I just thought: oh, lovely, Christmas, deck the halls. I had not realised that it was, of course, of course, going to be a bit more complicated than that.
Forgot to charge the camera battery, so there were no photographs today. Here are a few from the week:
Every time, the snow on the nose just kills me. Every time:
Also, do you know anyone else who can have snow on their nose and still manage to look like Grace Kelly?:
Hill in panorama: