Melissa Kite Melissa Kite

Festive basket case

Melissa Kite's Real Life

Putting a letter through the slot of a rubbish bin and pointing your car key at the front door of your house are fairly good indicators of stress, I think it is fair to say. I found myself doing both these things this week as I floundered around in the Christmas rush, trying to reorder every single aspect of my life in time for 25 December.

Why is this? Why do we have to ‘get everything done before Christmas’? I don’t mean buy a turkey and send some cards to friends and family, which would be a pleasure. I mean, do every single job we’ve been meaning to do all year in the space of two weeks.

A mini version of this happens when you go on holiday. What starts as a quick tidy round as you are waiting for the cab to the airport morphs into a massive deep clean. You Hoover nooks that have never before been Hoovered, rearrange furniture, turn the mattresses, empty the fridge, clean the oven, rewire all the plugs…My mother used to say it was so that the house looked nice for us to come back to. But there is no logic in that. If going round the edge of the floor tiles with a toothbrush is what it takes to make a house nice, shouldn’t we do that whether or not we are going to Spain?

The Christmas makeover is far worse and amounts to a sort of deep clean of our entire lives. I find myself redecorating, renovating, refurnishing and recarpeting with the zeal of the condemned. To watch me running around putting everything in my life in order, you would think Christmas Day was a sort of Logan’s Run, when we all got taken up into the sky and evaporated.

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