Ho Ho Slow

Posted: February 25, 2014 in Photography
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

I noted recently that I always miss the window for posting Christmas photos on account of the fact that I’m never here in Glasgow when it happens. This is never more true than when I’ve also been without a computer for two months and can’t physically edit them until February. Nevertheless: December 2013!

Speaking of belated holidays: Halloween proper being something of a bust, John and I had a “cocktails and movies” do-over at the end of November with Abi and Cat. (L-R: James Dean, vampire victim and, though her “Merlotte’s” logo is covered, True Blood waitress.) We managed to get through Hocus Pocus, Rosemary’s Baby and The Cat and the Canary before exhaustion/inebriation set in.

Persian wedge.

In John’s continuing quest to make himself wholly undivorceable, he imported all of the authentic ingredients necessary to make…

…okonomiyaki! My very favourite (and most missed) Japanese food.

It was a) wonderful, and b) exponentially better than the crap they serve at Sapporo Teppanyaki here in Glasgow which was – until now – the only avenue available to me.

Wilfred was also thrilled, as he is most any time a new box enters the house.

Courtesy of my friend Cory, who apparently knows me rather too well.

So, strangest coincidence: my mum phoned to tell me she was sending a Christmas decoration and I told her that would be perfect because we’d just decorated the metal ornament in the living room that we’d dubbed the Nightmare Before Christmas Tree.

This was what she’d sent.

This blown glass bauble also got its first airing, and lasted approximately one week before Minerva toppled the entire thing off the window ledge and shattered it to smithereens.

Thankfully the adorable lollipop stick Rudolph given to us by Kim survived intact.

Another positive: whilst December might have seen my laptop permanently out of commission, it was also the month that I retired my decrepit old BlackBerry and got my first new phone in three years. (I’d actually been due an upgrade since January but never thought to ask.) This in turn meant that I was able to join the rest of the modern in possessing a phone that was capable of using Instagram and – not being able to edit photos taken on my actual camera – it rapidly became my go-to mode of photo sharing during technical impairment.

The Scottish Ballet’s Hansel & Gretel, and some pre-theatre jägerbombs. Stay classy, Glasgow. (In my defence, I actually just needed an energy hit having barely slept the night before.)

From mid-month onwards, John was off for the rest of the year, and so we celebrated with a movie double-bill. We also smuggled in some prosecco to toast the new DrJohn BSc(Hons), MBChB, FRCPATH Part 1!

My reaction to the films was sadly a little more tepid. Frozen is perfectly entertaining but I can’t fathom its popularity over any number of previous Disneys, and whilst I really want to like The Hobbit series, every time I come away thinking of it like an all-you-can-eat buffet: all the dishes look so good at the outset but invariably you overload your plate, realise you don’t want half of what you’ve taken and end up ingesting so much that you can’t even appreciate the good stuff because you’ve made yourself sick. (As with Arwen’s expanded role in LotR, however, I have absolutely no qualms with the creation of Tauriel and am always happy to see women taking centre stage in Middle Earth.)

Glitter Juice Drink – because sometimes your juice just doesn’t scream gay loud enough.

As someone who skipped PE every week in high school, I don’t know if my former self would be amused or horrified to learn that I now have a gym membership. Nevertheless, after a slightly inconsistent regime of one lesson every three months or so, I can now confidently say that I can (just about) swim! Or, at the very least, that I can drag myself from one end of the pool to the other without fear of drowning.

Final night with the cats before I left for Dundee.

Wilfred protesting my departure.

Homeward bound! Apparently my family’s talent for overfeeding animals even extends to hamsters.

My mum may have adopted a little girl but thankfully my old bedroom is exactly how I left it. (This, by the way, is among the more terrifying things I’ve ever woken up to.


And Lucy, with her grand old lady face.

My brother and I have an annual tradition of watching shitty horror movies on Christmas Eve, though Silent Night, Deadly Night somehow succeeded in being less shit than You Better Watch Out which I’d watched with John a few days before. Really though: how do you compete with this level of hot mess?

Lewis, who – though you can’t tell from this photo – is currently recovering from losing half his fur due to an allergic reaction to a flea bite. (Insult to injury, he’s an indoor cat and it was my brother’s dog, Molly, who brought the offending flea into the house.)

They replaced my blood with aloe, my skin with chlorophyll, and filled my lips…

[dramatic pause]

…with venom.

Keith’s ever-expanding Lego collection.

You did not seriously think that a hobbit could contend with the will of Sauron? There are none that can.

Christmas Day at mum’s.

I was going to wear a festive shirt but I decided just to advertise instead.

I’d also taken the liberty of ensuring the cats were sufficiently kitted out before I left.

And just when you thought pugs couldn’t look more ridiculous…


Following on from Xmas 2011 when I was reunited with the Barbie and the Beast, my mum took this year to revisit yet another childhood trauma. Back when Keith and I were kids – and mum was, coincidentally, going undiagnosed with high blood pressure – we managed to accidentally break our animatronic Teddy Ruxpin in a manner that somehow cost him both his eyes. Due to her bouts of unpredictable and manic rage, however, we were too terrified to tell mum that it had happened. Needless to say his injuries were discovered regardless, and we were treated to a terrifying and expletive-filled rant about how he “should have gone to a family that fucking appreciated him.”

Oh, how we laugh now.

What do you get for the hamster that has everything?

My mum’s alternative take on Christmas dinner.


I settled for documenting everyone else’s disgust.

Case in point.

Giving me, as they say in Dundee, the dreh boak.

This is the face of someone regretting their decision to buy a box of edible insects.

This photo is something of an optical illusion; both because the cup is gigantic and because that hamster is obese.

Keith continues to care for my beloved succulent, Bertha, for fear that I’ll somehow kill her within a week of bringing her home.


If you don’t think this is the best mug, you are perfectly wrong. (Alas, it was brother’s present and not mine.)

“That’s no moon…it’s a cookie jar.”

I am, by the way, inordinately proud of the present I got for Keith’s Christmas this year – his biscuits will never go Chewie again.

Christmas Dinner #2 at C&K’s.

…and look who made it through to Dundee!

Handmade by Kim (naturally) and topped with gold.

Everyone was too polite to say that they wanted Kim’s obscenely wonderful Jaffa Cake trifle as a starter so I broke the ice.

Hamish and a (dangerously broody) Colin.

Final day in Dundee before I headed back to Glasgow.

Fare thee well, rotund rodent.

I spent my final night at Keith’s because he lives so close to the train station, where we made the questionable decision to watch Silent Night, Deadly Night 2. Thankfully, after an utterly bewildering first hour of rehashed footage from the original, it emerged as a timeless classic. I also caught the original Girl with the Dragon Tattoo which I was really getting into until I realised that it was 4 in the morning and I had a train to catch in a matter of hours.

Having paid just £15 for both of my journeys to and from Dundee, I was rather proud of my forward planning skills. On arrival at the station, however, I immediately came to regret booking what I thought would be a quiet Sunday ride back to Glasgow when it emerged that I’d be sharing the train with every loudmouthed, drunk-at-11-am, football supporting arsehole en route to whatever god-forsaken game was happening somewhere down the line. Thankfully for all parties (not least of which my claustrophobia since ScotRail evidently sees fit to sell four times as many tickets for these journeys as there are seats), they all got off at Perth and I was able to enjoy the remaining two-thirds of the journey without fear of my lung collapsing. It wasn’t long, then, before I arrived just in time for…

…Christmas #3 with John and the babies.

My presents from John, featuring a very familiar-looking bag… (Also The Little Mermaid on blu-ray which I proceeded to watch a socially unacceptable number of days in a row.)

Both my mum and grandad gave me individually addressed presents for the cats.

This is why I’m a crazy cat lady.


An A+ wrapping job from Kim. I’m a sucker for good wrapping paper.

And one final discovery: that Minerva had proven herself quite the mountaineer in my absence, including but not limited to scaling bookshelves and full-length doors.

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