Planning Christmas in the Middle of the Night

The wind outside sounds like the sea raging in the dark. Spray, waves, tidal rhythms as it blows through the sky, tossing and turning. When I lived in Shankhill, Dublin, I used to think the tumbling sea sounded like the roaring of lorries on the A1 in London. The mind in the middle of the night is amazing.

Now I am thinking of Paella. Tomorrow ‘the girls’ come round to ours for their Christmas Night. Six or seven absolutely beautiful 24 year olds whom I have known since secondary school. I suggested I cook Paella for a change. They will bring lovely desserts.

Other things that need to be done now keep popping into my middle of the night maelstrom: I must walk Poppins,  I need to swim. I should change sheets and organise the Christmas dinner. I forgot the red current jelly. Hah! that meddlesome middle of the night mind is stressing with me. Christmas Dinner will sort itself. The Duck is in the fridge, the red cabbage, potatoes, bussels, green beans, parsnips are the in the pantry. The Christmas pud with amaretto hidden in the middle ready to burst free with a bite nd linger on the tongue is by the fish tank.

All I have to do is remember not to drink too much of the traditional cream Baileys I bought at the airport on my return from London. I am always so disappointed when I over turn the dark bottle (and I don’t know how this happens so often) and instead of a flow of creamy liquid splashing over the rocks of ice in my glass, a disappointing dribble of the merest drop slides out and hangs miserably between the cracking cubes, an insipid milky colour which I can’t even get my tongue around.

Happy Christmas, everyone. Enjoy the next few days. Happy New Year, too, and thanks for reading….

Bring it on, 2015!


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