It could have been the start of a porn film...:
"I stood under the shower, the powerful stream of water pulsing over my naked body. The rivers of water washed over my chest. With a wrench in one hand and a screwdriver in the other I was ready for action."
Unfortunately it was simply a matter that the on/off lever had broken when I jumped in the shower after our morning cycle....through the icy mud of Epping Forest. There wasn't a plumber to be had, even on the 27th of December, so I took on the task myself, on the basis that if I didn't we'd use up the UK's entire water resources in 24 hours and would flood the kitchen below as well. DIY has never been a strong point (ask my old woodwork teacher), but needs must. After removing all sorts of screws and wrestling with a very reluctant cog, I managed to turn the torrent off. SO we will remain without shower for the next 'phew' days. Fortunately we have a bath so won't smell. Much.
It's been an unusual Christmas for us...normally we're in Wales with the boy's grandmother and uncle...on his mother's side. It's not something I've enjoyed for the last six years, but it's been done out of concern that Grandma in Wales should get to see her grandson if she can't have her daughter. Occasionally we've been graced by the boy's sister, but not for the last couple of years. And she wasn't going to be there this year either. Christmas Day has generally involved little more than a big lunch, and watching TV. Which to be honest isn't my idea of Christmas.
So with a heavy heart and conscience...and with the Boy's encouragement, we decided to stay in Essex - and spend Christmas Day with friends. This was in many ways a much more traditional Christmas...eighteen people, an enormous lunch (at half past four in the afternoon), lots of little children who were massively over excited, a 'magical snowman' who set them fun tasks all day long, and plenty of party games. Everyone there was required to give a performance of some kind. Which may not seem too onerous, until you realise that one person is head of music at the ENO, another was an opera singer until she became a neuro surgeon and even the six year old could play the violin. With my heavy cold (nay man flu), I'm sure my reading of a series of texts between Mr and Mrs Santa was probably a bit flat, but it was the best that as an unmusical I could manage. And it was politely received. The boy did a duet with an easy confidence. Good lad for restoring the family pride. I'd ask him whether he enjoyed himself, but he got an X-Box for Christmas, and conversation since then has been little more than grunts.....
At our own house, we had lots of visitors too. Uninvited visitors. We've just had a new boiler fitted, and it seems the works must have disturbed slleping ants. Who took it upon themselves to make their presence felt in the kitchen in our absence. They were everywhere, zig zagging around. Until I got the spray out. It was a shame to zap them, but I had little choice....I so hope they don't come back...
And now onto the that time between Christmas and the New Year, where time stands still, nothing much happens, and rest and recuperation is fully enjoyed. It's a time of the jigsaw puzzle...and I'm really pleased to have found a little app for my mobile that turns every picture into a jigsaw. So it is my full intention to spend the next week doing little more than the six hundred jigsaw puzzles that now exist on my phone...what a brilliant way of looking again at holiday photos that would otherwise just be forgotten.