I caught the bus home from the city today and discovered that it was a Christmas bus. This one was even more fabulous than the one photographed for the article, it had twinkling fairy lights in the windows, glittery mistletoe and berry decorations on the tops of the benches, plastic snowflakes hanging from the sparkly streamers which covered every single pole and handle, a fully decorated Christmas tree set up in the luggage compartment with assorted presents, and the green automatic ticket reader had a red skirt on it.
I was the only one on the bus, and I immediately had that totally illogical feeling that everyone waiting outside for their own bus was looking through the window at me and thinking "Look at that Jewish lady sitting on the Christmas bus all by herself, hahahahaha!!"
Then two women popped their heads in and asked the driver if their daughters could hop on to have a quick look even though it wasn't their bus. These two girls were delighted with the bus, and you could tell how happy the driver felt as he watched them admire his handiwork (I had shyly said "Nice decorations" as I got on). As the girls left he gave them each a little rag-doll as a present, how nice was that??!!!
I really enjoyed that bus-trip (40 minutes and I was still grinning as I got off at my stop), which was surprising as I've been quite the Grinch lately. It's just that everybody at the shops, the hairdresser, the doctor, the dry cleaner, the petrol station, the vet... they all want to know how my Christmas preparations are going - "Finished your shopping yet? There's so much to do, isn't there?" and it just really starts to ANNOY ME THAT EVERYBODY TAKES FOR GRANTED THAT I BELIEVE THAT JESUS IS THE MESSIAH AND THE SON OF GOD.
There, I'm sorry. I'm hanging my head in shame. I swore I'd be nice and bite my tongue but I just couldn't help it.
So, as I said, that bus cheered me up.
In other news I have a fab, easy recipe to share with you. To make up for my rant above (oh look, Eleanor used capital letters, oooo, she must be REALLY angry) I'll go so far as to say that this makes a lovely addition to a festive meal, whether you live in the northern or southern hemisphere.
Take some sweet potatoes (you know, the orange kind) and peel them. Then continue using the peeler to peel the entire potato into shavings, arrange the shavings in one layer (as much as possible) on a tray lined with baking paper. Pop into oven at 150 degrees for 15 minutes, now mix them around and return them to the oven and keep moving them around every 5 minutes or so until they magically become crispy sweet potato chips. No oil, no fuss and tastes great with a glass of white on a summer's evening (had that tonight, hence am slightly intoxicated), also fab dipped in guacamole, but imagine they'd be awesome with the full roast meal as the snow softly falls outside.
I got a new sofa and armchair, and yes the delivery-men DID say "You're lucky we managed to get this to you before Christmas, I bet that's a relief" and no I did NOT question their interest in baby Jesus and his connection to my purchases of furniture. Ahem. So what I wanted to tell you was... oh right... this is a very big and exciting decision - to get new furniture for the lounge room, because we had our previous sofa for 16 years, purchased when I was pregnant with Master CB. I dripped breast-milk on that sofa, the kids used it as a trampoline when I was too exhausted to stop them any more, and Master CB peed his pants on that sofa more times than I care to remember. In fact, one end of the sofa was officially called "the pishy corner" and Miss CB would ensure that none of her friends ever sat on it. My mother remembers visiting us and being quite surprised to hear Me, Mister CB and Miss CB all yell in unison to Master CB "Not on the sofa" as he started to settle down for an evening of Wiggles viewing. "Not on the sofa" then became a popular catch-phrase with my parents which they liked to use with each other from time to time, just for a laugh, you know.
Oh, that reminds me of the time that I walked into the house with the kids and discovered that we'd been robbed. So I went back outside and called the Police and they came into the house with me, without thinking about it I placed Master CB on the sofa, and then as I was talking to the policewoman I saw him sitting on the sofa with a wet patch emerging, I let out a shriek and lunged for the sofa and I remember the look of shock on the policewoman's face as she said "Oh no, did you have a secret stash of cash in there?"