Happy New Year, mes amis. I see that I’ve managed to go an entire month without posting, which is clearly remiss of me.
Must do better.
So, what’s happened since November? Christmas and the New Year Break, obviously. Today is my first day back and I have to say (and this will come as no surprise to you) that I would really be pretty much anywhere else but here, but as usual there are bills to pay et cetera and so forth.
Christmas itself was quiet – we stayed at home and hid from the world, though we did have colonel_maxim over for two nights, which was good (we got the band back together). Apart from (over) feeding and watching Doctor Who and a couple of other telly progs, we didn’t actually do much. On the 27th we went to ellefurtle’s folks for a second Christmas with her side of the family. Being a couple of days after the actual day, it meant the pub was open properly, so we took advantage of that for a couple of hours while Elle’s Mum wrangled the duck, which was stubbornly refusing to cook at the anticipated rate.
For New Year itself, we simply hid. We did nip out to buy a few essentials – the place was, and to an extent still is, stuffed with seasonal fare, but we needed bread and other staples (and, of course, cat litter. The little blighters are just digestive tubes).
Earlier in December was rather busier. Right at the beginning of the month I attended the eighteenth Annual GASP weekend – that’s eighteen years we’ve been mooching off to Norfolk (mainly) for pour long weekend of lads-only boozing and gaming (the actual event has been going a few years longer, but used to be held in North London, when three of the crew had a house large enough to accommodate us all).
I managed two whole days back in the office before we slipped off to Prague for a few nights for the Christmas Markets. I’ve never been to the Czech Republic before and was rather surprised – in the Old Town at least – at just how Anglicised everything is. By which I mean that even the shop names were in English. In fact, other than the currency and the fact that they drive on the right, it might almost have been a very old and ornate city in England. This was a bit disappointing, though I still enjoyed the trip. Last year (um… 2014), we went to Heidelberg in Germany, which is smaller, but I think the compactness helped, at least from the point of view of the Christmas markets. Prague was rather more widely spread and that, together with the unseasonable weather meant that it felt rather less Christmassy than I’d hoped. Nonetheless, we enjoyed ourselves immensely and I think we will go again, though perhaps not at Christmas.
The weather was weird though. I managed to wander around in tee shirt and jeans much of the time – though the locals felt the need to wrap up- as it was so mild (it did get chilly at a couple of points, so I was glad of my sweatshirt and, once, my coat). Clearly Central Europe doesn’t get as cold as we’ve been led to believe. I need to check the average and projected February temperatures for Stockholm as we are intending to go there in early February. That’s somewhat further north, so it might actually be chilly up there.
Right. Better get on and do some work. I’ll try to update more often. Honestly.