As the Christmas season approaches Alan had asked if we could visit his girlfriend, Zita, in Birkenhead shortly after my exams. As we drove down towards the south-west of England we began to pass through some of Scotland’s beautiful views. As we whizzed by the mountains in the distance we saw their white topped heads against the bright lively green that was sprouting out from the base of the mountains. Thankfully, this year the snow decided to skip over our little island for the most part so the journey down was relatively smooth and hassle free. Upon arrival in the Birkenhead we ended up spending twenty minutes in traffic!
However, this unexpected extra time gave Alan and I time to admire (or express disgust in) the various decorations on the houses. Some can be rather pretty, but like so many other years, I often think that some people just try too hard to follow the American standards. Most times people can accomplish this and create a pretty scene, however, so often I find that it just looks tacky. There was one house in particular that I couldn’t understand how the people could cope with it, the view or the electricity bill! Just about every inch of their garden was covered in a glowing or flashing statue, the drop lights hung loosely from the roof giving an unkempt look about the house and to top it all off their window looked like it was trying to contain the undying beast within. The horrific rapid flashing that (I assumed) came from their Christmas tree would have sent even the most stable epileptic into a cluster of seizures. How the inhabitants of the house could cope within the flashing lights of the room, I do not know.
Often around Christmas we see acts of kindness and giving, of love and charity but just as often we see acts of egotistic people who greedily populate their houses with excess clutter that simply shows off their wealth and social position. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy the spirit of Christmas with it’s get togethers and clusters of lights but when you hear of some of the expenses that people are willing to spend only to decorate their houses it’s shocking!
Anyway, enough rants about that, we arrived just as duck was descending upon Zita’s street and the stars were reaching out to us. As we entered the house I was reminded of our last visit to Birlenhead and I settled into my adaption to make the place my temporary home for the next four days. It is my ability to adapt to my surroundings and feel at home wherever I am that I am very fortunate to have and often rely on to make a possibly awkward week more relaxed.