Far too much to do

It may come as a surprise to virtually everybody, but I exist in a near constant state of having a lot to do. While it may look like I’m lying on the sofa with a mug of tea reading Douglas Coupland, I’m actually skilfully avoiding all of the very busy things I ought to be doing.

In case you didn’t realise, Christmas is next Thursday and because I’ve been so busy I slightly forgot. Ireland follows the same Christmas tradition as the UK; when the doors close on Christmas Eve they stay that way. Everything stops until after New Years when we re-emerge somewhat more rotund than before.

Part of the problem is that I have been theoretically preparing for Christmas for weeks and so failed to notice its impending arrival. I blame making a Christmas cake. When you spend two months poring brandy over an eight inch square brick on a weekly basis, you become so entrenched in routine you forget it is time to dig out the apricot jam and royal icing.

Being so fond of chaos, I have a very long list of Things to Do. This week alone I have to go to Dublin, go to Kilkenny, get my hair cut and go to a jolly soirée at the invitation of Pat the Farmer. I also have to paint the walls of the hall and of the upstairs landing.
Before I can paint the walls of the hall and of the upstairs landing, I have to paint the ceilings because otherwise it will make the whole room look tired. Before I can paint the ceiling in the hall, I have to rebuild the section of it I destroyed.

To be fair, it needed to come down anyway for complicated reasons involving bureaucracy and the hall was already covered in dust from sanding the woodwork and there was a crowbar handy and… well… things just followed a natural progression.

The trouble with decorating is that it is necessary to slot it in around all of the normal everyday things one is expected to do like cooking and shopping and all the rest of it. Being Christmas, one is also expected to make longs lists of necessary items and then go out and procure them. I’m just glad I managed to get the pickles sorted.

I’ve worked out that I need to get finished by Saturday at the latest so that I can have a clean and get the tree up on Sunday for when Strider claims to be arriving. Monday I will have to be tackling the ironing, cleaning the oven and sweeping the chimney. Tuesday I will be doing the final shop and baking for guests. Wednesday I will be slumped in a heap somewhere and feebly attempting to wrap presents before cleaning the house again.

There is one way I can get all of this done.

Omit sleep.