Saturday, 19 November 2011

Kind and helpful creatures

I had an unexpected experience yesterday. On searching for some winter images, the results left me feeling contrary; pictures of snowy landscapes - clich├ęs to be sure, but usually the thing to remind one of magical times. It was as if a premonition for later that evening when Little Miss R informed me “I’ve asked Father Christmas for a cat... and if he doesn’t get me one I’ll ask Mother Christmas... then the elves”. There are various reasons - which I can’t explain - for not getting a cat. I couldn’t explain them to my daughter either, and though the request was funny, I went to bed worried with the prospect of disappointment.

I woke up in the middle of the night with a cold, laying for an indeterminate length of time with my eyes closed, a wandering mind, wondering how long I could last before seeking out some paracetamol. My mind was fixed by the bedroom door opening, followed by light steps around the side of my bed and a gentle shake. “I had a nightmare”, she said. It took a cuddle and a glass of milk to settle, ending with a smile; it took me a cup of tea, and an hour and a half or more to do the same. I read The Accidental Tourist, and then I read the Christmas letter again. “A cat or other pet” said item one, and I could smile too.

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