Life Every year, at around this time, I have a Christmas moment, or the moment when I physically realise that Christmas is coming. Sometimes someone says something, or I see something, or hear something, and the intellectual understanding of the upcoming date becomes fused with the rest of my body and I can't help smiling. Sometimes it lasts seconds, sometimes minutes, sometimes as was the case a couple of years ago on a visit to Manchester, a whole day.
This year it's been late. Despite present buying, despite watching for news of Christmas television, despite walking through Liverpool One at night the other Sunday through the giant sparkly reindeers and past the massive decorated trees, nothing. I was with a friend who'd challenged me to list my top five favourite Doctor Who stories so I was probably distracted. He wouldn't let me have Marco Polo because I hadn't "seen it" and I was fishing around for an alternative. Nevertheless, the usual triggers weren't working.
Then, thankfully, this morning, it happened. I was waiting for the bus into town and Chrissie Hynde's 2000 Miles began on my mp3 player. I knew it was there, I'd added it and the rest of Christmas Hits 2007 last night. But as soon as the opening guitar riffs hit my eardrums, well, reader, I weeped tears of joy. It's rare the reaction is quite that intense, but it's not been the best of years (are they ever?) and perhaps Christmas means more, but for these three and a half minute duration, I was transported. Thanks Chrissie.