It has been a bit like the house of the undead here this week. Tom kept to his annual ironic tradition of returning from the conference of immunologists with an evil infection, and has been very ill all week with flu. I have not been much better myself (delirium actually set in at one point), but had perked up enough by Friday to be able to take on duties as principal tea-maker etc. The weather has made things a little tricky for us too, as the recent freeze / thaw / freeze pattern has made it much more difficult for me to get about (the pavements are largely clear, which means that I can’t wear my crampons, but smaller footpaths are strewn with deadly patches of ice upon which my left leg is liable to give way at any moment). While the rest of the UK seems heartily sick of the snow, I was actually grateful for a fresh fall today, as it meant I could at last put on my spikes and get out for a decent walk. Bruce’s affection for the snow also continues unabated.
It felt very good for the sick zombies to get outside with their enthusiastic dog. Tom actually celebrates his birthday today, so our walk ended up in our local, for a taste of festive ale. This was Bruce’s first introduction to World of Pub, and I am happy to say that he behaved himself admirably – only emerging from under the table when a Jack Russell dropped by to say hello.
The promised Hogmanay entertainment seemed singularly appropriate for two convalescing invalids.
After raising a modest glass or two, we returned home to decorate our tree. One of my favourite things of the many lovely (and moving) items I received while I was in hospital was a nativity scene, knitted by Sister Winifred and the other nuns of Kersal Hill convent, Salford. (The scene’s donkey has his own entry in my correspondence archive here). Though we do not celebrate the season in a religious way at all, I am incredibly proud to have Sister Winifred’s knitted nativity in my living room this Christmas.
I think Shepherd number 1 is my favourite figure. . .
. . . though I am also very fond of Balthazar
The whole scene is a thing of knitted JOY, and you must see it. (When we get some decent light, I’ll take some more photographs and show you). In the meantime, it’s back to the sofa with me. Hopefully the coming week will see us feeling better and fired up with festive VIM. Till then . . .