MOST of the rituals associated with the first working week of January feel onerous: returning to school and work, dismantling decorations and queuing for missed parcels in the nearest Royal Mail depot. Thus it was uplifting to counterbalance these things with a performance of The Nutcracker at the Royal Opera House. It’s a production that never fails to delight.
The following morning, the family made an expedition into town to spend some book tokens kindly given to the children for Christmas. Foyles, the object of our outing, seemed very busy. At first, I tried to suggest suitable purchases, but, after 20 minutes of complaints, my resolution crumbled and the children marched out triumphantly with books entirely of their own choosing.
Just how poor my choices seemed to them was powerfully brought home later in the day. While tidying in the house, I stumbled across the fragment of a ruggedly spelt diary one of them had written some months ago. It began: ‘Today we went into the most gastly museum were we had to stay for hours. The oley bits I enjoy was going to the shop and seeing the Egptian things.’ I think it’s a six year old’s description of a visit to the Louvre. JG