Mum’s done a round robin letter for her Christmas cards this year, filling people in on what appears (quite literally) on paper to be the most doom and gloom laden year since, erm, last year. She had hand-written it which meant it looked like a spider had walked through some ink and then had a huge fit across five sheets of tiny note paper.
The original plan involved me photocopying the letter so it could be included in the cards, but it was determined – by me – that the writing wouldn’t show up after copying due to the unique way in which she had barely touched the paper with the pen while writing it.
And there was one other problem I came across as I set to typing it up…
I couldn’t read half of it.
Okay, most of it.
She’d written a bit about grandma enjoying the Christmas prep at the care home she’s in, but it read as if she’d actually written “is out of Christmas preparations”. I mean, that might have been what she was going for. More worrying was that when I asked mum what she had written she had no idea. At all. Basically, she’s now sent out a round robin letter that I have typed from her scribbles which may, in fact, bear no resemblance to what she actually intended to go out. It ticks all the major boxes and covers the various strokes, deaths and other nightmares that have befallen us during the year.
And it’s in a kind of purple colour like it’s been printed with old school carbon paper. Because, for some reason, both of the printers (because, apparently, just the one printer wouldn’t do for dad) – despite having nearly full inks – refused to print anything in black. At all. But I managed to coerce the coloured inks to work and it seemed far, far easier to print it in a fun colour than email it to Carole for her to print it out and then spend the evening stuffing envelopes.
I also ended up “volunteering” to wrap some presents which mum had bought for various people. I think that I successfully made them look as if they had been wrapped by someone who has had a stroke – I wasn’t aiming for that, I was just wrapping stuff as I would wrap them normally, it just turns out I have a very particular style… which isn’t necessarily something to be proud of, apparently.
But in the New Year we really should treat mum to a new roll of sellotape, the stuff she’s using at the moment is so old that the glue has flowed to one side of the tape, and is sort of oozing out of the side of the roll like sap from a tree.
I didn’t even know such a thing was possible.