Only a week or so ago it seemed we were doing absolutely nothing over the Christmas period and suddenly there are not enough hours in the day.
The husband's Thursday Golf Group (yes there's a Wednesday Golf Group also - different participants) suddenly decided that was what needed to end the year was a pre-Christmas/New Year grand dinner somewhere grand. They decided against Banque in Remuera; that would be too noisy they thought. Organiser in chief, Colin finally booked a table for ten at Cibo which as far as we were concerned was a great idea as it is just at the bottom of the road and walkable to in less than two minutes. And it would be quiet too!
Of course it was anything but quiet and the party crescendos emerging from the place could be heard as we left the house. I even imagined I could see fireworks but they could simply have been the lightning flashes that raced across the city just to remind us not to take summer too literally. So for the next couple of hours we screamed at each other across the table and I had enormous problems hearing the waiter when he tried to describe to me what the `cigar dressing' on the venison loin actually consisted of. I ordered it anyway.
We spent yesterday recovering from the noise assaults from the restaurant and by five pm, fortified with stout gins and tonics, made our way to Bob and Margaret who have a top floor apartment with a breathtaking view over the city and harbour. Pre-Christmas drinks and nibbles Margaret had said and indeed the nibbles were so substantial I cannot imagine eating for the next week or two. Very civilised it was, even the lads with hearing aids could actually hear each other and what is more we were home in time for Coronation Street.
And when we returned we found that somehow or other a gift giver had arrived, gained access to our Fort Knox style block, and left a vast assortment of French pates and cheeses in the courtyard.
`It's a mistake,' said the husband doubtfully, `They are not meant for us.'
I was putting them away in cupboards by that stage though.
He handed me a jar of potted crab and mentioned the name of the oldest son, the one who has no control over his spending and to whom we in vain email learned articles on obsessive-compulsive disorder.
`Or else it's Patrick,' he said shaking his head doubtfully.
I crammed the potted crab into the last bit of shelf space, beside a carton of cornflakes and said I would send a text of enquiry in Patrick's direction, which I did.
`Did you come by our place earlier this evening?' the text queried in suitable bland fashion.
This morning a reply sprang from the Samsung S3 screen as I blearily began to think about facing the day - `No - that was Santa' it said.