Wednesday, November 08, 2006

In the doldrums

There are two periods of the year that are, to me, most depressing. One of them is just after the New Year and the other is the run-up towards Yuletide.
I am in the middle of such a depression right now. Hardly anything is happening, nothing much appears to interest me and I find there is very little to write about that is worth mentioning.
This is not a new experience; I’ve always found this time of year very boring, although during the Iris era, I didn’t notice it as much.
November and December in 1973 were given over to run-of-the-mill activities. I had my club bookings and we would hurry back home out of the cold instead of staying out for a late meal as we often did earlier in the year.
I remember we once made the mistake of accepting an invitation from Iris’ sister and her husband around this time to join them at their favourite pub one Sunday evening. It was a dreary place in a small village just outside the city. The d├ęcor hadn’t been changed for the last twenty-odd years and by the taste of it, the beer hadn’t either! I said it was their favourite pub; in fact it was the only pub they ever visited and that was only on Sunday evenings. The highlight of the night was a half-hour Bingo session with a prize of five pounds! Even in the early 70s, a fiver was laughable!
One evening, I suggested that we took them out for a meal for a change. We picked them up from home and drove out to a decent little place that Iris and I knew quite well. It was a pub in Derbyshire highly praised for its cuisine. Iris and I plumped for escargots for starters. Her sister and hubby chose prawn cocktail! I cringed when giving the order to the waiter! However, I managed to persuade them to try the venison medallions which they enjoyed, not having had venison before.
Yes, these weeks leading up to Christmas will, I know drag on and on until suddenly I’ll be caught up in the pre-holiday mad scramble. I reckon that bears and squirrels have got it made; they can get their heads down and hibernate until springtime!

Trivia note... Doldrums
The doldrums are areas of very still air near the equator that stalled sailing ships. The doldrums are located between 5 degrees north and 5 degrees south of the equator. They are also known as the Intertropical Convergence Zone.

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