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Today's quote:

Friday, December 23, 2016

I receive Christmas cards, therefore I am

 

Christmas cards are said to have been around since 1843. Well, not with me! I only became a recipient and reluctant sender of such cards when I settled in deepest Australian suburbia in 1985 after a Christmas-less and Christmas card-less lifetime spent in some of the most remote corners of the world.

Back in Canberra, my suburban neighbours used to engage in an annual 'look-I-received-more-cards-than-you' contest by stringing up their Christmas cards across their lounge room windows.

With my competitive spirit aroused, I began to keep the few cards I received each year until, a few years later, I was able to string an impressive-looking collection across my own window. 'Look, I received more cards than you!'

On closer inspection by one neighbour, I had a bit of explaining to do why, in the year 1990, a friend was wishing me "all the best for 1986!"

At "Riverbend" there are no neighbours and no contests; indeed, there are no Christmas cards except for the odd one. Just now the postman dropped an odd one into my mailbox from an odd friend in Fairfield.

I rushed out with a bottle of HENKELL TROCKEN to wish him a merry Christmas - an old German custom, like eating fermented cabbage and starting wars! - but he'd already driven off. Ah well, it's the thought that counts!

He must be the postman with the longest arms and the most precise driving skills, because he moves his car within an inch of the mailbox, reaches over and - without so much as opening the car door (well, he can't; it's too close to the mailbox!) - he drops the letter into the box.

Apart from wanting to raise my mailbox by several inches to give him a real challenge, I'm also considering rolling razor wire across the gate - another old German custom! - to keep out visitors because I want more than just a silent night; I want a whole silent Christmas!

Thank you for not bothering me!