Sunday, November 25th

Toot toot! Only 29 or 30 days to Christmas depending whether you count Christmas as Eve or Day. In the UK the main celebration is the morning of Dec 25th but here in Poland it’s the 24th in the evening. Being a mixed up family we get to celebrate both.

We’re going to have a proper big smelly tree this year. Last year we were just moving into this apartment and so were too busy and disorganised to do Christmas properly. We bought a couple of tiny artificial things but it really wasn’t like Christmas should be so this year we’ll visit the garden centre on the way to Nieporent and get ourselves a 2.5m high piece of Norway and stand it in the corner of our lounge. I must say it’s nice to have the space for that. In many other apartments finding room for such a tree would be an impossibility.

Mind you, getting to Christmas is hard work. November is usually a long and tough month and this year is no exception. It seems to go on forever all the while getting darker and colder and greyer. Ho hum.

My God! Dropping Zosia at school in the morning is turning into a nightmare now they’ve changed the parking regulations. It used to be that for the morning rush they opened the gates to the playground and cars could drive in, drop the kids and then exit in a sort of orderly one-way system. The regulations have changed and now cars in the playground are verboten. This means everyone is forced to find somewhere else to park or drop and nobody’s worked it out yet.

Don’t know what this means for the caretaker yet. His main duty in the mornings was pretending to supervise the traffic. The primary skill-set required for this was the ability to stand upright and point vaguely into the distance. Not skills he is likely to find other applications for unless he joins the police and goes on traffic duty when the lights break.

Making matters worse are the League of Unreasonable Kid-Droppers. The worst drivers have the biggest cars which they park badly and then ensconce themselves in the school café for an hour nattering about the price of fish while the rest of us have to negotiate the crossroads of infinite possibilities for hours trapped in a never-ending fractal of giving way to people from the right in the hunt for a place to stop the car just long enough to throw Offspring out and wish her the best of luck finding the school!

In general though, we have no cause for complaint as her school is in Mochina West, just the other side of the highway so the engine is hardly warm by the time we get there. A five minute drive, which compares very well to the journey those coming from Lomanki have to deal with as they join the masses commuting into Warsaw every morning. As we scoot across the highway we can see the never ending snake of headlights heading off northwards into the distance.

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