Matthew Munson: A busy week in the lead up to Christmas

Bryan and Matthew preparing for Christmas

There’s always a week, leading up to Christmas, that is incredibly busy. You find yourself thinking, “How the hell am I going to get through all of it without going a bit crazy?” But, of course, you do, and you then stop feeling sorry for yourself and enjoy the experience (well, I do, anyway).

This week has been such a week for me. I started pretty much as normal, working from home, and then was booked to be in the office on Wednesday and Thursday. It was with a gulp that I realised there were train strikes on Wednesday, so getting to Ashford was going to be more complicated. Buses saved the day, although it took quite a while; three and a half hours, on three buses, and then a lift from a friend up to the office itself. I was all travelled out by that point and thank heavens I didn’t have to go back that night; I couldn’t face the possibility of replicating the same journey.

I stayed in a Premier Inn on Wednesday night, which was heavenly as we didn’t finish work until near-enough 11pm. It was a staff awards ceremony and, immediately afterwards, we needed to prepare the rooms for a Thursday luncheon. Given the choice, I think a late night was preferable to a very early morning – although I rang someone from work at 8am on the Thursday morning (assuming that, as I was awake, so was everyone else), only to find that she was having a lay in and I’d woken her up. Mortified doesn’t quite cover it.

I wish I’d counted how many steps we all did during the two days, but if my aching feet and back were any judge, it was lots. I was the photographer for the event and was trying to get candid shots of people – when they’re all downloaded, I’ll see how good I was at that.

After the busy Thursday, I finally got home about 5.30pm (on the train – they were running again, yippee!), quickly unpacked, and then walked into town to meet my son at the end of his dance classes. I think I was almost dozing off in the waiting area at one point, but as I snore (apparently), I splashed some cold water on my face and forced myself to stay awake.

On Friday, I spent the day at university, after making sure Bryan went off in his Christmas jumper to school, and Saturday I took him back over to Ashford for a Christmas Party being held for the children they look after; Bryan and I were running a game. Father Christmas even paid a visit, which delighted the younger kids – and probably would have delighted Bryan once upon a time. But it was lovely to help the children get into the festive spirit.

Sunday is said to be a day of rest, and that’s certainly my intention. I’ve promised Bryan that we’ll put up our Christmas tree, and we’re visiting my parents for lunch, so perhaps we can slow it down just a little bit before next week hits.

Bryan finishes school on Friday for the holidays, and it’ll be lovely to have him home for that time. We’ve got his siblings coming to visit during the holidays, and we’re really excited to see them again, and he’s got a Christmas activity to go to for three days as well – his choice, and I’m more than happy to support him on that.

One tradition we do have every year is going to a panto, but this year we’re going to two; Aladdin at the Marlowe just before Christmas and Sleeping Beauty at the Sarah Thorne Theatre just after Christmas – Bryan’s friend is appearing, as are a few others from his dance school, so he was keen to see them perform. How could I refuse?

Right, I’d best get cracking on this Christmas tree, I suppose – damn thing won’t decorate itself. A self-decorating tree … hmm, you heard it here first.


  1. Went to the Marlowe yesterday, what a fantastic production.
    Went to the Palladium last year, what a disappointment, not like pantos that I remember!! They need to take a leaf out of the Marlowe’s book. Enjoy!!

Comments are closed.