As planned, Christmas Eve was spent going to see The Golden Compass
in town, although I shall write about the film itself separately. I'm always surprised by how few people are out and about on Christmas Eve. I mean, I'm sure you can't really go out and party if you have kids, as there are Santa duties to be attended to. But why don't those in the pre-parental phase of life want to go out and toast in Christmas Eve? I know I used to quite often in my late teens and early twenties, but it was the same story then - a world half-deserted.
Anyway, Charlotte and I caught the bus in together, and then she went off to meet her friend Duncan while I saw my film, and we reconvened later when it was over. I met them in an 80s bar called Reflex, which I could see was probably a real swinging joint most nights of the year. As it was, though, they had about six customers, including us, for most of the evening. I wondered why they were even staying open - and by about 11:30 they'd obviously started wondering the same thing, as they shut up shop and kicked us out. So we decamped to Glamorous across the road, a gay bar which was in fact pretty full. As Duncan pointed out, a lot of gay people don't have families to go home to at Christmas in the same way as straight people do. They had possibly the world's worst drag cabaret act going on - decent enough outfits and everything, but the problem was that they weren't actually singing; just mouthing the words to other people's risqué songs, played way too loudly over the PA. And to a comedy routine about contraception, which involved two participants, but only had one person on stage, mouthing half of the words. So we grinned and bore it until midnight came round, but then made a quick exit.
Christmas day itself was much the usual sort of thing. All my presents went down well, and I got lots of nice things, including chocolate, Art Deco notecards, calendars (guinea-pigs for work, Erté for home), a vintage purse and belt, and a lovely pair of nested tables from Past Times which we're actually going to pick up from Leamington tomorrow. At the risk of sounding like an ungrateful brat, though, nothing from my Amazon wish-list. Which in fact meant no stories
- no books, no DVDs, no worlds of magic and adventure. Well, actually Santa was kind enough to bring me a rather splendid David Tennant dream in the early hours of Christmas morning, and there was also the small matter of the Doctor Who
special later that day (anticipation for which I think inspired the dream). But I could have done with Who
season 3 or Order of the Phoenix
on DVD, too.
special had better have its own post, too. It had to be time-shifted, anyway, as we have our Christmas meal in the evening these days, so we were busy serving up and eating goose when it was on. Which was very tasty. And then after Who
, it all seemed to be over for another year, and there wasn't even a film that was worth staying up huddled under a quilt for, so it was off to bed at a very conservative 23:45.
Today has seen our annual Boxing Day pilgrimage to the Waltons', for nibbles and drinks and chats. I swear little Holly is twice the size she was last year now, and from certain angles looking at her is like looking 27 years back into the past, and seeing my childhood playmate - pictured here
, f'rinstance - now her mother.