I spent yesterday evening wrapping familial festive gifts. Bereft of a Star Trek style transporter, under COVID restrictions, I’m as yet unclear how I’ll deliver my loved ones these tokens of affection.

This conundrum exacerbated by my family being spread across multiple English counties, who’re adhering to various tier edicts. North Yorkshire, Tyne & Wear, Cheshire and Kent just four of the destinations where yours truly seeks a delivery strategy.

I did suggest to some family members we unwrap each others yuletide gifts on Christmas Day via FaceTime, Subsequently handing these benefactions at a later date when lockdown edicts allowed……… However, that was unanimously decreed to be my single worst idea since suggesting the family open a chaffinch farm next door to a local cattery.

Prior to splitting with my estranged wife, I rarely tackled the chore of enveloping gifts in chromatic paper (or indeed monochrome paper). This task was ordinarily undertaken by her, who’d a passion for that sort of thing…… It was heartening to know she’d at least some capacity to display passion.

There’s still four weeks to go until Christmas Day. However, as I wrapped the Xmas gifts, in conjunction with staring at distant flickering illuminations, festive feelings emerged tentatively from within yours truly….. That being said, I’d recommend you avoid the jeopardy I faced by wrapping presents on an aircraft runway. It’s a bloody dangerous pastime!

Footnote – As a disclaimer, my final sentence in the above paragraph is quite clearly fictional whimsy. Never go anywhere near airport runways!….. Unless of course you a pilot, whatever they call air hostesses nowadays, or airport workers…. Oh yeah, or a passenger.

As penned in a recent blog, my two adult children both responded “A record player.” when asked what they’d like for Christmas. Actually, the vinyl disc player was my daughter’s second choice; a decision reached after I’d highlighted wrapping world peace maybe problematic.

Upon hearing both offspring proffer they’d like record players as gifts, I couldn’t help but feel my question should’ve been a tad more specific. Perhaps, something along the lines of “What would you like for Christmas that’s under £25?”

Of course, I’m only joshing with the above observation. Like the Artful Dodger told Nancy in the musical Oliver,” I’d do anything” for my kids. A fact which, when revealed to my offspring, led to the following group chat with my progeny:-

Jonny (my 30 year old son) – “Would you lace my shoe?
Me “Anything.”
Rachel (my 27 year old daughter) – “Paint your face bright blue?”
Me“Anything.”
Jonny “Catch a kangaroo?”
Me“Anything.”
Rachel“Go to Timbuctu?”
Me“And back again”

Me – “I know that I’d go anywhere for your smile. Anywhere for your smile. Everywhere I see.”

Jonny“Would you climb a hill?”
Me“Anything.”
Rachel“Wear a daffodil?”
Me‘Anything.’
Jonny“Leave me all your will?”
Me‘Anything.’
Rachel – “Even fight my Bill?
Me“What fisticuffs?”

At the conclusion of this familial show of my reverence, an emotional looking Rachel asked me “Dad, how come our Jonny get’s all your will?….. Particularly when all I get is you painting your face bright blue, you buggering of to Timbuctu and wearing a bloody daffodil?”

“I wouldn’t worry about it, love.” I responded to my youngest child. “The bloody daffodil’s worth more than my will!”

Footnote – The lines of lyrics borrowed from the refrain ‘I’d Do Anything’ were written by Lionel Bart as part of his Oliver score.