Wednesday, 28 December 2011

The Quiet Inbetween

'I think,' says Mrs Pumphrey, who has joined me in the kitchen to assist with a two-handed assault on the remainder of the Christmas shortbread, 'that Christmas Day, followed by Boxing Day, should then be followed immediately by New Year's Eve. Three days - bish, bash, bosh! Get it over and done with as quickly as possible.'

'I agree,' I agree. 'It's an odd time of year, isn't it, this gap between Christmas and New Year?'

'More odd for the likes of Mrs Slocombe,' says Mrs Pumphrey, nodding towards the garden. Mrs Slocombe has declined the biscuit fest in preference of playing with her new basket ball hoop set. She is remarkably good at 'slammin' the dunk' given she is only 14 inches tall and the net is eight feet tall. (I believe 'slammin' the dunk' to be the correct term, but my American friends can feel free to put me right on this one, as I may be having a quaint English moment following the ingesting of too much spiced red cabbage.)

'She's decided she wants to try out for the women's basketball team for the 2012 Olympics,' says Mrs Pumphrey.
'Haven't the teams already been selected?' I say. 'The Games are only 200 odd days away now.'
'Oh, I don't know,' sighs Pumphrey. 'I'm just humouring her at the moment. I managed to dissuade her from applying for the beach volleyball on the grounds that a chicken's bottom is never going to look good in a thong.'
'And for that the world will be eternally grateful,' I say
'Are the Games really that close?' says Mrs Pumphrey. We have finished the Christmas shortbread and are now moving on to the Christmas cheesey crackers and leftover red pepper houmous.

I confirm that they are. I know they are imminent because Andy and I went for a walk in our local park yesterday which is currently being transformed with new paths and carparks, and the dredging of streams and the felling of trees and the landscaping of well, er...landscape. The local council might say that this massive project is for the benefit of us local people, but I know full well that if the Olympics weren't happening an hour up the railway track, then our park would be left in its usual state of fairly ordered parkiness rather than being transformed into a super-duper 'we're expecting masses of visitors' parkiness.

'Are you planning on being less cynical in 2012?' says Mrs Pumphrey.
'No,' says I. 'But I am planning on being less reactive. I've already made a start. No Daily Mail for four days now.'
'That's very good,' says Mrs Pumphrey.

We sit in companionable silence, because that's all one can do in this quiet inbetween that buffers Christmas from the New Year. That and have a jolly good read of the books one received for Christmas. My favourite so far has been Stella Gibbons' 'Christmas At Cold Comfort Farm.' In fact, I have decided to make Stella Gibbons my Author of Choice for 2012, and have used an Amazon voucher I received to buy three more of her novels.

'So,' I say, once Mrs P has unglued her beak from the bottom of the houmous pot, 'have you any plans for 2012?'
'I'm still working on them,' says Mrs P, mysteriously. 'And now I think I'm going to slam a dunk with Mrs Slocombe.'
'It's the only way,' I say.


LynneFtWorth said...

I think it's just called a "Slam Dunk"

Denise said...

Thank you for putting me straight! The only dunk I know is that which one performs when putting one's biscuit in tea. But you know what these chickens are like, making up their own words!

Lovely to hear from you and hope you are well.