Friday, 6 December 2013

Chapter Eighty Five

Christmas is very much all around us at present and we are right in the swing of things. Life is becoming very busy for us both and we are both tired out in the evening. I find I am working a physically active day for the best part of twelve hours...and Linda is doing the same. We stagger in and eat dinner but are normally heading off to bed by nine pm.
Fortunately for me, Linda is an absolute powerhouse on her days off. Whereas I will use my day off to try and get some energy back...Linda dives straight in to other things. This is why we have...
1/. All the presents bought.
2/. All the presents wrapped.
3/. The house all prepared for Christmas.
4/. The garden and allotment neat and tidy.
My contribution seems to have been to make tea; keep out of the way; read books; and be taken the rise out of.
Amazingly; and to both parties delight; this system works.

We have had a couple of good evenings out though over the last couple of weeks. Truro has a 'Parade of Light', in the evening as a start to the Christmas down here. We drove into town, parked up, and walked through to Lemon Street. There was a good place to stand that we knew of, and we found ourselves standing on the side of the road with a huge crowd of people.

Although noisy and cold we enjoyed the whole thing very much. The parade was full of bands, but the main attraction were the huge paper lanterns, in all sorts of shapes and sizes, and lit from within. They must put a great deal of effort into making them.

It was a good evening.
The next evening I was up at Tregony WI and giving a talk on Royal Mail. It was great fun and I enjoyed it. A lot of post has been delivered since I last gave a talk like that. When I was forbidden to do them ten years ago..."We're a business not a service."... I swore I wouldn't do any more and I have stuck to that. Since then though I have decided that I don't really care about that anymore. If people want to hear a talk about Royal Mail, they can have one.
It went well and we all had a bit of a laugh. They say you can tell if a talk went well by the amount of questions you are asked. Judging by this evenings was a good one.
We also had a brilliant evening in Grampound at a 'Folk and Cajun' evening.
The folk band were very good and one of Linda's friends was playing and singing in it. Great fun. There was a meal as well of something called 'Gumbo'. Very nice dish and tasty with it. Seemingly it is a cajun meal from the everglades.
It tasted great anyway. The Cajun music was very good too and we were soon up and dancing with everyone else. A very good evening.
Linda has spent her days off bringing her new business up to speed. She is to be found designing things and organising stuff at every opportunity. She is busy at the home as well and has now settled down into their working pattern. She is actually enjoying herself there which is good. I hope that when the time comes she will be able to combine both the home and her own business. So long as she is happy with what she does, she tends to stay balanced and focussed. It is then that she makes such a brilliant impact on those around her.

St Mawes has still been a delight on my deliveries. I saw this huge ship coming out from Falmouth the other morning. Fantastic.
I was able to check out her number on the side and look her up on the computer. I do love this little world of mine.
My own work is going well although there is the old dark cloud on the horizon. I never thought it would happen again but I have grown as fond of this duty and the people living on it as I did with Bentley. I am very aware that in the new year there will be a re-sign taking place and I may lose the duty. I have made so many friends over the last year and been so very happy at St Mawes. I don't think I can face staying on if I lose it. I'm not sure; at present I really don't want to think about it...but it bubbles up into my head now and again.
On the plus side though; the work is now starting to come in thick and fast and I am enjoying myself very much. I do love Christmas Duties. This will be my 43rd Christmas as a postman. I have done a Christmas duty every year since I was seventeen.

We have got the Christmas tree up and the decorations are all around the house. Old favourites have been brought out and new ones bought. It is all very festive and the cottage looks a treat. We even have three cards up already and I have had a £25-00 tip already. Our main room reminds me of my childhood and the Christmasses we had in 'Wishanger'. Sadly there is only me and mum to remember that time though. I wonder if she will think it when she gets here.

I have just got over a really bad cold and infected throat. Its been years since I had a cold or sore throat like this one. I didn't take any time off work, which didn't go down well with the blokes I work with. I managed to give all three a mild cold of their own. I felt really lousy for about ten days and am only now starting to improve. I have to confess that being out in the fresh air has certainly made it more bearable. Once I get rid of this catarrh I should be up and running. Its not been pleasant though.
We did have a lovely time this Sunday though and we enjoyed ourselves very much. One of Linda's friends invited us both out to dinner at his club that he goes to. We joined him there and had a lovely meal and a catch-up with him. It was a lovely few hours and he refused to take any contribution towards the bill. When he went to pay the bill Linda reminded me that she had told me he would never let me pay anything towards the meal.
She then changed the subject and asked me how old I thought he was. He had been very spry and with all his 'marbles' intact. To look at he seemed very fit and active. The only honest answer I could give was to say he was in his mid seventies; probably 74 or 75.
Linda told me that was what she had first thought...but in fact he is 94. An amazing and wonderful old man.
When we got home we went for a little walk down to the creek. While we were there Linda told me she wanted to collect some moss and dry it out. Two days later I got home off delivery and found she had revitalised my crib. It looks really good now.

This is now the sixth of December and the workload is increasing. Linda has just gone up-country for a few days to see her family. The home Linda works at insisted she have a week off before Christmas...or lose the week all together.
I am not allowed any time off in December by Royal Mail, unless it has been certified by a coroner, so I have been left behind. I would love to have seen my kids this weekend but it was not to be.
Linda will stay with her parents for the weekend and will be coming home on Monday. She will be bringing mum down with her to hopefully have a little bit of a convalese with us both.
Although today is my day-off and I am in to work tomorrow and again on Monday. Sunday is going to be the day I complete all the Christmas cards.
Today I have a haircut to get done and shopping for the week to do. The weather is good and so the guinea pigs have been put out in the garden for some fresh air and a bit of sun.
Finally, this morning, we awoke to the news that Nelson Mandella died last night. This is a man that very few will ever forget. There's not a lot I can say... but on this occasion I think David Cameron got it right when he said...
                                              "A light has gone out in the world."