2018 draws to a close in The View from the Terrace

  • Dec. 31, 2018, 2:25 p.m.
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  • Public

It’s the last day of 2018, a time for reflection. It has been a year of good and not so good things. We’ve had some wonderful trips away; Wolverhampton in March and a trip to my grandfather’s theatre, a wonderful week in Cornwall in April and a great long weekend in South Wales in September. There were a number of health problems to cope with during the summer months but most were overcome. We are still waiting for the appointment to discuss Hubby’s future options. On the whole I feel it was a good year.

We had a nice Christmas. We have a blue spruce tree this year, I have always wanted one. No other decorations in the house apart from some holly but Hubby has strung coloured lights in the garden and also some white snowflake ones near the door, they look very pretty.
On the Tuesday before Christmas we went to our folk club’s Christmas do. I wasn’t too well that day, had to take a migraine pill in the morning so I didn’t sing, but I was determined to go and I really enjoyed just listening to the others for once.

We had lovely meal with Cat and David the following day. They like to spend Christmas Day just the 2 of them together as she finds family get togethers quite stressful, so we meet the week before to exchange gifts. We met at a cafe in Monmouth where they do vegan food, Cat is vegan. Hubby and I both decided to try the vegan menu and it was delicious. I had a Jackfruit and black bean burger with fries. Cat has been trying to get us to turn vegan for ages. I have more or less given up fish, though I do occasionally weaken when we are on holiday as I never feel I have been to the seaside unless I have eaten fish and chips! I am now trying to cut down on milk. I tried soya and almond milk but didn’t like either of them, but I have found that rice milk is nice and I have cut my milk consumption by about half. I’m not sure I will ever give up completely though as life without cheese sounds like a life not worth living, almost as bad as life without chocolate! I already can’t have any alcohol because of my migraines.

Christmas Day was us and the boys. We had lunch together then exchanged gifts. Tony gave me a lovely wooden planter for the garden and Cat had bought me a Jemima Puddle duck garden statue. I have no idea where she found that. I was looking everywhere for one a few years ago but had given up. Peter Rabbit is widely available but Jemima is one of my favourite Beatrix Potter characters. Cat is brilliant at finding things. Tony left after the present giving to go to Justeen’s and have another Christmas dinner! Chris had brought his Xbox so that we could watch Sky movies and we watched the new Jungle Book and then the latest Star Trek movie. Then after Chris went home Hubby and I watched Call the Midwife and Eastenders. Boxing Day was just the two of us and in the afternoon we watched our DVD of A Christmas Carol, the 1984 version which was filmed in my hometown of Shrewsbury and has Edward Woodward, one of my favourite actors as The Spirit of Christmas Present. In my opinion it’s the best version of the story.

On the Friday after Christmas we went to a Carol concert at a local church arranged by a friend of our from the folk club. It wasn’t an ordinary concert but was by a group of West Gallery singers. They sang in the old style of church music before there were organs in churches. Apparently most churches used to have galleries at the opposite end of the church from the altar and a local village choir would perform the music with musicians playing violins, clarinets, and a cello for accompaniment. The Victorians felt this kind of music was too jolly for church and bought in organs and pulled down most of the galleries. In the church we went to at Clodock the west gallery is still there. I read Thomas Hardy’s Under the Greenwood Tree a while ago and that was all about one of these old choirs and how it got superseded by an organ so I was interested to see this choir.

I was delighted that they showed another of my favourite films, Hugo, on Saturday. It often seems to pop up at Christmas. Last night we watched the first episode of the new dramatisation of Les Miserables. It was wonderful. It’s one of my favourite books and when I see dramatisations I often feel they are not as good as the book but, if anything this was better than the book. Victor Hugo is a brilliant author but he does ramble, also they showed all of the different plots running simultaneously where in the book each one is separate.

Reading this it sounds as though I am a TV addict which couldn’t be further from the truth. Normally I don’t watch a lot but over Christmas there has been a lot of good stuff. Tonight we are off to a New Year party and it is getting late so I must go.

Last updated December 31, 2018

Marg January 01, 2019

It was you who pointed me in the direction of Hugo last year and I thoroughly enjoyed it! I didn't think the Call The Midwife Christmas Special was quite so good this year - normally it reduces me to tears by the end but it seemed somewhat fragmented this year somehow?
I'm glad you had such a nice Christmas and you feel quite positive about the year in general - I was worried your health issues would have dragged you down a bit. I hope the party went well last night - Happy New Year!

^..^Kat January 02, 2019

Sounds like a very nice Christmas.

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