It’s a beautiful cold clear day. The sky is blue, the sun is shining, there’s no wind and the dogs have enjoyed a walk and a swim in Crowthorne Forest. Roxy has just finished a small snack of coal – that makes a change from one of Frankie’s toy cars or a piece of Lego. Now she, like her friends and relations, is damply snoozing.
It is unnaturally quiet here, after a very busy and enjoyable Christmas Day with Bethan and Robert in London.
Bethan's family and Robert’s family enjoyed the day together.
Some of the sixteen . . .
Sadly the Dorset contingent of our family was missing. Having had a very difficult twelve months they did not want to be far from home. Hopefully 2017 will be a much happier time for them.
Susannah in pensive mood
Now, though, Barry and I are sitting in splendid isolation, if it is possible to be isolated with so many faithful furry companions. On Boxing Day Susannah travelled to Antigua where she will be distracted from missing and worrying about Frankie, who is in Cornwall, visiting his paternal grandparents.
Tomorrow we shall pack the dogs into the car and visit Gillian and her family in Dorset. Bertie will enjoy seeing his brother, Buster, and Roxy will be highly delighted to romp with her siblings again.
New Year’s Eve, or Old Year’s Night as my Norfolk brother-in-law calls it, beckons but we shall ignore its lure and remain by our own warm fireside. We shall probably watch the fireworks televised from London – they are usually spectacular. Doubtless there will be many local fireworks, which are a trial for poor Gus.
Frankie will be home again in the afternoon. Then, on New Year’s Day, he and I are driving to Heathrow to meet Susannah. (Barry will be dog-sitting.) I suspect she will spend much of the following day pushing out the zeds.
. . . and then it will be back to business as usual . . . (sigh)
Happy New Year, one and all, and may 2017 be Healthy, Happy and Prosperous.