A very sherry Christmas to one and all

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THE extra feed has been bought in, the battery changed on the electric fence, and the brace of cockerels – which will form the major component of our Christmas day meal – has been inspected and given the thumbs-up in the freezer.

Christmas? Bring it on.

Apart from topping up feed and water, we are all ready to take it easy and let the good times roll on The Big Day, helped along by a tin of Quality Street and the odd sweet sherry.

Traditionally, the animals not being eaten on Christmas Day were given double rations on Christmas morning. No, not as some sort of present from the kindly farmer, more so that he didn’t have to fetch out in the dark and cold later on when he’d consumed his body weight in turkey and had a skinful.

Actually, we won’t be drinking much sweet sherry – yak. We’ll be drinking a mix of hedgerow hooch and a very nice, super-cheap Rioja from Lidl. And when our livers scream for mercy we’ll have a few sips of home-made elderflower cordial and soda. Delish.

Joking aside, sherry will be drunk – I am my mother’s daughter in that I do like a glass of Amontillado when we’re opening our presents. Either that or sloe gin if we’ve made any. However, this year, like last year, sloes have been thin on the ground round our way.

We have a wee drop of last year’s left and, sadly for the rest of my family, only I know where it is, and I am prepared to take this secret to my grave if necessary.

Oh, OK, OK, it’s in the cupboard under the stairs where the Hoovers live. Yes, that’s plural.

Are we the only family with a vacuum cleaner that works, and one or two ‘spares’? These reserve vacuums aren’t broken, so they don’t get thrown out, but they don’t work efficiently enough to be the hoover of choice. But I am not – repeat, am not – a hoarder.

Oh no, we’re right back to the column of a few weeks back, remember that? The man who had hoarded so many newspapers that he had person-sized gaps in the piles so he could literally slither from room to room.

No, that’s not me. Honest. Although if someone in the family asks for something random, say, a cocktail stick, some glitter or a spring from a ballpoint pen, I can usually lay my hands on one immediately.

Right, that’s me, off to look for the lovely trimmings I kept in my special drawer from last year’s Christmas crackers. They’ll be a nice festive touch for my Hoover collection.

So it just remains for me to wish a very Merry Chrimbo to all my loyal readers. Yes, Jill H, Tracy B, Yvette S and Gamford, that’s you.

Thanks for sticking with it. I’ll see you on the other side of the festivities.