If everything had gone according to plan, or at least according to plan B, I might have been spending Christmas with my parents not far from Loch Ness in the Scottish highlands.
My original plan was to visit them in late June, and I had bought two tickets in January, so when the Covid monster struck I was left with two tickets to nowhere.
But thinking that by Christmas the lockdowns would be lifted by late December I started making plans to spend Christmas in Scotland.
And I was looking forward to spending the holidays with my parents for the first time in years, as well as taking in the wild Hogmanay celebrations in Edinburgh.
But alas, that also went down the Covid tube, for obvious reasons.
So I was quite disappointed, until my Mum sent me a Christmas hamper so I could have a Scottish Christmas in Canada.
And I finally accepted that Christmas would be different this year, a quieter more personal affair.
Still sad and lonely for many...
But in the deathly days of a surging pandemic it can also be a way to cheer people up, with the lights, the food, the warm feelings, the many random acts of kindness.
And of course, the music and the songs from great choirs like this one...
As I've said before, the words don't mean much to me, but isn't the sound of gentle humanity glorious?
Especially at a time when so many are suffering and dying.
Even in the midst of death, the holiday spirit raises me up, and makes me believe that we will kick Covid's ass.
And hopefully build a better world from the ruins of this one.
Thank you for reading my blog.
Merry Christmas, Joyeux Noël, Happy Holidays everybody !!!
Happy Holidays Simon. I hope you're able to see your parents next year, and that an independent Scotland finally gets out from under the yoke of Pig-Porker Dave and BoJo the clown's colossal failed gambit. This is sure to be a Christmas for the record books, but the "miracle" wisdom of scientific R&D looks to be bringing us all a much-anticipated gift. Here's to the light at the end of the tunnel, and a COVID- and Con-free 2021!
Merry Christmas (even to Cons.)
It's a tough season when single and alone. Glad your parents sent a nice gift back.
All the best to you Simon and thank you for your wonderful blog posts...inspiring...informative...clear-eyed...and helpful. Stay safe and healthy. :)
Merry Christmas Simon
Merry Christmas Simon. The photo of the Christmas pudding and the Glenfiddich certainly stirs up some fond memories.
@ Unknown - See I knew he was special. 🤴 OK, maybe he can't walk on water, but he can skate on the Rideau Canal, right?
I'd had the Boney M song in mind for awhile already about J.T.'s unique birthday configuration. Didn't know it was a 22 Minutes clip until now... although I usually sing it as "Maggie's Boy Child," because it fits...
Question for NORAD: Does the sleigh take off from a hangar at YUL? 🎅 🦌
What a thoughtful, loving mother you are blessed with, Simon. It was something my mother would have done if she was still with us and though it was with heavy heart to see what she had done for you, the sweet memories it stirred soon had me filled with joy. It's funny how the little things in life can be so profound and endearing. Merry Christmas my friend and thank you so much for sharing this story.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Simon
Having watched Shetland many times, I'm curious about something!
Do Scots actually drink whiskey warm with no mix???? Jimmy Perez does it often.
Merry Christmas everyone, enjoy your Constantine holiday.
My favorite Christmas songs, Silent Night by Simon and Garfunkal, And so this is Christmas by John and Yoko, Christmas in Prison by John Prine, and 2000 miles by the Pretenders.
A Christmas Mircle
The author fails to mention just how horrible burring coal is.
Hi Jackie....Thank you and Happy Holidays to you too. My failure to be able to get to Scotland weighed heavily on me all year, in addition to everything else. And although I didn’t mention it in this post, I would have loved to check out the progress of the Scottish independence movement which has never been stronger. And with the Con clown Boris Johnson in charge, and Brexit now a disastrous reality, it can only get even more popular. I still have my two tickets to Scotland, and I’m hoping that I will finally get to use them next summer. In the meantime we still have to defeat the Con threat to this country...
Hi anon@2:00 pm....The holiday season can be a lonely time for many people, and the pandemic has only made that worse. I was lucky enough to have my longtime companion to help me get through this sad time, and help me eat all that food my Mum sent me. But I have always seen loneliness as a real threat to the health of both the young and the old. And I have a few ideas on how we can all do more about it...
Hi anon@2:46 pm....Thank you for those kind words. I was not happy with a lot of my posts this year, just writing them was hard, and as I’m sure you noticed, there were days when I was too tired or discouraged to write. But hopefully with the pandemic receding I can hit my stride again. And yes as you say, the main thing at this time is to stay healthy and safe...
Hi unknown.@5:40 pm...Thank you and the same to you. That’s a lovely photo of Margaret and baby Justin. I hear that Poor Margaret is having a hard time coping with the loneliness of the pandemic, like so many Canadians. She is such a sweet woman, so it’s another reason to hope that the pandemic can be over as soon as possible....
Hi RT....Thank you and the same to you. Our family home is right at the start of the so-called Whisky Trail. And the Glenlivet distillery is one of the most magnificent. It’s very large and in a beautiful setting with a ruined castle right across the road, a field full of highland cattle, and a lovely picnic area. I don’t drink, so with all the booze in the pudding and the mince pies I usually feel a bit drunk. But At his time of the year I’m not complaining....😉
Hi Jackie....Thanks for that great clip, when I saw baby Justin with all that hair, I laughed like crazy. I may have to change my opinion of 22 Minutes. I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before, but my first photoshop of Justin had him in the Bethlehem crib shouting “everybody must get stoned!!” If I didn’t mention it before, please keep it to yourself. 😉
Hi JD....Yes I do have an amazing Mum. She had to be to raise a son like me. Nothing could have prepared her for that. She has been sending me a Christmas pudding for years. But this time she obviously decided that wasn’t enough. I’m sorry you lost your Mum, but as you say, the sweet memories last forever. Thank you for being such a loyal reader, and for all the great comments you have contributed....
You as well, Simon, and all your readers. I'm so glad to have this place to visit!!!
Hi Brian....Happy Holidays to you too!! I am happy and proud that you enjoy visiting this blog. I think I am very lucky to have such great commenters who are so nice and contribute so much to this blog. I will try to make it an even better place to visit in 2021...😎
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