There’s simply no point in resisting, Agatha darling. The time has arrived and we must embrace the whole blasted fandago.
What on earth are you talking about Mary dear? Have you been listening to Bohemian Rhapsody again?
No dear one. Although I am partial to a spot of Freddie Mercury from time to time. No I am talking about Christmas of course. Have you put up your tree yet?
No Mary, not yet. Snetter has been having a bit of trouble with the Pinetum this year. He has struggled to find the right tree as we have had some squirrel damage.
Oh I say! Nasty little critters aren’t they.
Yes, and in fact poor Snetter was bombarded with pine cones just last week. I had to bandage his head as he took a glancing blow from a particularly large and spiky one. He swore blind that the creatures were ganging up on him.
Well, I have always said: ‘tis better to purchase a tree from ye garden centre than suffer the slings and arrows of outraged squirrels.
You may have said that, but only after several glasses of mulled wine and one too many mince pies dear.
Anyway. Why don’t I take you down to look at the selection they have this year. That way you don’t have to ask poor old Snetter to do battle with the furry army. We can travel down in the Land Rover, plenty of room in the back for an eight footer. Would that be large enough for your needs dear?
Well Mary, we do normally go for twelve feet. I prefer a large bushy one in my hallway, and I do like to toss my tinsel about with gay abandon, as you know dear. Also I do have the entire cast of the Nutcracker Suite moulded into decorations from alabaster which does take up quite a large portion of the tree. Still, perhaps one should be frugal this year. By the way, are you able to drive the old Landy? I thought you came a cropper last time when you tried to do a three point turn at the Huffington-Smyth’s luncheon event in Pall Mall?
Oh, that’s all forgotten. The nice policeman was very forgiving after I offered to buy him a new pair of boots and pay for his surgery. No, I am perfectly confident we can get there and back in one piece.
By the way, Mary, that reminds me. Are we inviting the Huffington-Smyths to our Christmas charity event at the Bishop’s palace? I’m not sure Crispin would be quite strong enough to witness our belly dancing, he has a weak heart as you know.
Good point Agatha. The other difficulty might be that his wife, Lucille, never got over the comments that Gussie Twot-Wickham made about her cockerpoo. And Gussie is a major contributor to the event so it might be wise to leave them off the guest list.
Quite – one wouldn’t want to upset Gussie. She is a force to be reckoned with, but we need her list of contacts in order to raise lots of lovely money for our charities.
Yes, I do admire the old bean in fact. Gussie is pushing ninety and still works full time. She makes such a contribution to her local community and one does feel, from time to time, that us oldies get overlooked, pushed aside and made invisible by society who seem to value youth over experience.
Yes indeed, Mary dear. We both know how it feels to be made to feel worthless once one is over a certain age. Is it something to do with our grey hair, do you think?
Possibly, I imagine that once one starts fossilising, letting one’s hair reach it’s full silver potential, then the younger generation thinks one has lost one’s marbles and they simply don’t know what to say.
Which is patently ridiculous of course. We both still have a full set of marbles despite our advancing age and creaking backs. I mean, how could we possibly remember all that shimmying and hip thrusting at our belly dancing classes if we had gone gaga?
Quite! Although, I do have my moments. Only this morning I discovered I had put the Wedgwood in the washing machine and tried to wash my smalls in the dishwasher!
Easy mistake to make Mary. Did the Wedgwood survive?
Happily yes dear. I also forgot to switch on the machine, so all is well. The Count was a little surprised when I got the tea cups out this morning and his underpants were lodged in one of them. Still, he thought it was my eccentric English ways, rather than a senior moment.
We need to keep reminding people that we are alive and kicking and making a contribution.
And, remember the charity work we do, and many of our age group keep the charity shops going around the country, volunteering their time. We should raise a glass to them, tell them that they are not invisible, that we need them still.
Oh yes, I agree. Time for a small sherry and a mince pie dear?
Lovely. So have you been practicing your hip thrusts and shimmys Agatha?
Only in the bathroom dear. I don’t want to alarm the servants. And you?
Yes, infact I do them in front of the Count. It makes him quite unaccountably happy.
Mince Pie recipe: http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/1813664/mince-pies