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Surviving Christmas


Posted by | Kristian | December 29, 2008 | No Comments

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Christmas is over and thank god for that. Once again I survived and only with minor injuries. By Christmas standards it actually went well especially taken into consideration that with Christmas being on Thursday and Friday we had four days off this year. When you spend Christmas with your whole family that is cool but it was only the girlfriend and I so four days can be an awfully long time. You need to understand that Ireland is shut over Christmas; literally.

On Boxing Day nothing is open except emergency services. There are no busses, no shops, no pubs, no nothing. I haven’t spent Christmas in Ireland for years and for that very reason. Quite frankly: very little changed. At least I saw a few taxis this time. This is an improvement.

My first Christmas here I was unaware of the fact that Ireland literally shuts down for the festive season. You can imagine my surprise when I tried to meet friends on the 25th and no public transport whatsoever. I didn’t have a car at that time and therefore was “confined to my quarters” for two days with little to eat or drink. I just wasn’t prepared.

Only then I understood the panic purchases on the 24th were shoppers cleaned out an off license to an extend that they had no beer left in the place. I’ve never seen anything like that before. Well, they knew what lay ahead of them. And they probably had family to deal with as well. I was on my own with public Irish television and an empty fridge. Glorious days that were. Back then I swore: never again.

Well, I didn’t have a choice this year. One of the disadvantages of dating a nurse is that they work awkward hours. Since she had to work on Boxing Day it meant I couldn’t go anywhere. At least this time I was well prepared. I stocked up the fridge, bought some gadgety presents for me, something nice for the girlfriend and of course bucket loads of booze.

It went reasonably well I would say. We didn’t kill each other and we didn’t break up. Christmas Eve – this is when continental Europeans exchange gifts – was actually nice. We spent a romantic evening, at least my gifts for her were well received, so what else could you ask for.

On Christmas day she was off for work so no problems there and even Stephens Day went OK. By Saturday morning however I showed first signs of exhaustion and by Saturday evening I was close to being a single again. With age comes wisdom (I hope) so I resisted the temptation to storm out of the flat and get drunk. A wise decision that was and so Christmas ended in peace and harmony. Now that it is Monday morning and I am back to work I can truly say: I survived Christmas once again. Safe for another year!

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