45 / Christmas

The celebration of Christmas was banned by Oliver Cromwell in 1647 and it didn’t take place for 10 years thereafter.  He hadn’t taken heed of the truism that prohibiting something merely increases its popularity.  The Grinch tried unsuccessfully ignoring the occasion. 

Christmas, I admit, is not my favourite date in the yearly calendar – at least, not the gift packaged, glittering, aggressively hawked version. The season this year set in during October in Cork city. I have a grim suspicion that we don’t hold any record.  It’s all become so complicated. The main actors almost overshadowed by bit players – Santa Claus, Rudolf, Scrooge....  A season of so many unrealisable expectations, so much expended effort, so much egregious expense, a turmoil of mixed emotions –  from euphoria to exasperation, and that’s just from unwrapping your present.

However,  children have their own headstrong ideas.  Ours, like Saman Rushdie’s, were what he termed ‘Christmas fundamentalists’.    From  soon after our eldest was born we were embracing the full ritual with all the trimmings.  One year I cut back on the Christmas stockings imagining the children to be too old for the ploy that Dad in his pyjamas tip toeing carefully across the bedroom floor was, in fact, Santa Claus. In the morning there was outrage.  I remember it well.  Christmas stockings were reinstated.  So....


  1. Happy Christmas to all the family! Love and best wishes. Marie and Co in Kerry xxx

  2. Lovely to hear from you. Congratulations on Chez Shea! What a mighty achievement!


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