Anatomy of a forester, Day 1, Christmas Day

The first day of Christmas, well we had a flying start with Christmas on 21st December with our daughter who is elsewhere today.

I enjoy my morning walk on Christmas Day – hardly any traffic, and a leisurely start.  Last night we were at The Craven Arms for a meal and The Penny Plain Theatre company’s traditional mumming play. (Yes, those same of Hardcastle’s Amazing Human Vegetable Machine)

We are now 4 days into the new year as the earth journeys around the sun and the days lengthen by a cock’s stride each day and the nights are shorter by a similar amount.

Here’s what happened on Sam Pepys’Christmas Day in 1661:

Wednesday 25 December 1661

In the morning to church, where at the door of our pew I was fain to stay, because that the sexton had not opened the door. A good sermon of Mr. Mills. Dined at home all alone, and taking occasion from some fault in the meat to complain of my maid’s sluttery, my wife and I fell out, and I up to my chamber in a discontent. After dinner my wife comes up to me and all friends again, and she and I to walk upon the leads, and there Sir W. Pen called us, and we went to his house and supped with him, but before supper Captain Cock came to us half drunk, and began to talk, but Sir W. Pen knowing his humour and that there was no end of his talking, drinks four great glasses of wine to him, one after another, healths to the king, and by that means made him drunk, and so he went away, and so we sat down to supper, and were merry, and so after supper home and to bed.

No TV in those days, but Captain Cock sounds to have been just as tedious!

No work today, the Bodgery deserted, left to the birds, no doubt there will be people passing by and wondering why I’m not having Christmas dinner there.  I’m glad I don’t have to go out and milk cows twice like I had to as a boy.  Many people have to work on Sundays, but lighthouse keepers no longer as there are none round the England and Wales,  the last keepers were withdrawn from North Foreland in 1998 by the 500 year old Trinity House, established by royal charter of Henry VIII

Henry VIII of England, who devised the Statute...

Henry VIII of England. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

. Wolf Rock, 8 nautical miles off Lands End.

Have a good and peaceful Christmas, and if you have time polish up your boxes ready for the morrow.

Forester’s Christmas tree (peeled beech twigs, with a little hazel).