​Complacent.  I am going to single-handedly remove that word from the dictionary.  Yes, yes, that’s a large book with lots of pages containing lots of words and their definitions the likes of which one will, soon, be forced to pay to see  … in a museum!!  Complacent.  How could I possibly have allowed myself to slip in to that state of mind?  This time last week, I thought I had it all sorted; thought I was in control.  I was looking forward to a week of taking it easy, arranging lunches with friends, drinks in the evening, catching up on sleep, putting up the beloved decorations whilst all the while anticipating our white Christmas in the Austrian mountains.  Have I learned nothing?  That world of calm and my world of mayhem are like magnets repelling and the mayhem wins every time!  Becca appeared back late last Friday like a tortoise with her shell.  Said shell (more specifically, her car) seemingly has a quick release button enabling the deposit of her latest worldly possessions exactly where she stops.  She, then, continues with her daily life negotiating around said worldly possessions as if they are invisible … to her perhaps but not to me or anybody else!  Manny arrived back from London this evening and had to move a pile of her coats and jackets, which have been sitting on one of the couches in the sitting room since last Friday, in order to sit down.  My house is in chaos and we have one day left to re-establish order and pack!  No man is an island.  Arguably my favourite quote, courtesy of John Donne, but within these words lies the responsibility for so much.  Chilled and sorted this time last week, in the last four days I have been to or been involved in trips to the optometrist, the dentist, the chiropodist, the bank, O2 …  The list is endless and my sanity long gone.  So, FOUR days left until Christmas and I cannot believe I have succumbed to the madness.  No wonder the actual day will forever hold its magic – the build up is torturous rendering all sense of proportion void.  By the 25th, it’s just too damn late so nothing for it but to relax and enjoy.  Happy Christmas!

All news tonight (Thurs) is of the disruption at Gatwick due to the drone sightings.  Flights have been grounded since Wednesday and approximately 110,000 passengers were due to fly out on 760 planes today.  I can only imagine how awful it must be to be one of these poor people desperately trying to get home for Christmas; to be the parent of a child trying to get back to his/her family, the place where one feels safe and loved.  Everyone is deserving of his/her sanctuary at this time of year; the only thing that really matters.  Those thousands of people at Gatwick have been denied that but by whom and for what reason?  The army has been deployed with specialist equipment but seem no further forward.  It feels increasingly sinister.  This is no accidental infiltration of the flight zone.  This is pre-meditated and planned.  Seemingly so simple, requiring of no licence, the perpetrator has inflicted massive injury on the country with such ease – and anonymity.  As Frankenstein created a monster in human form, the technological advances procured by man are without bounds and the limitations unknown.  In the wrong hands …

Tomorrow marks the 30th anniversary of the Lockerbie bombing.  All 259 passengers on board Pan Am Flight 103 to New York lost their lives plus 11 on the ground.  I shall never forget that night and I only bore witness to the news bulletins.  Those who were there or involved in the aftermath remain haunted by the images.  Thirty years on, the world is still a ticking time bomb at the mercy of a race governed by greed and power; a race whose arrogance will surely be its downfall.  So much which could have been learned from those we cast aside along the way … the majestic elephant, the wise mountain gorilla, the Native American.  The evolution of man – at what cost?

I am depressing myself, here!  How about a touch of Jeremy Corbyn to lighten the mood?!  He who, questionably, was seen to mouth ‘stupid woman’ apropos Theresa May.  Does anyone care?  Seriously.  Have we lost all perspective?  So, he didn’t agree with or was angered by what she said … so what!  To be referred to as a ‘stupid woman’ is of no consequence to Theresa May.  Merely part of the performance.  No swear words involved, he is perfectly entitled to mutter to himself unless … of course, silly me!  It is because he, supposedly, juxtaposed ‘stupid’ and ‘woman’.  The irony is, no woman of intelligence would pay any heed to such a remark.  Those who choose to make it an issue, I would suggest, are somewhat bereft.

Let me end on the bizarre and ridiculous: namely, the silent disco at the end of George Street!  Proving that my week has not been wasted, I learned that the garish monstrosity resembling God knows what strategically positioned outside Tiger Lily and the other ‘footballers’ wives” bars is actually a silent disco by night.  Of course it is!  Makes total sense now.  The bucket loads of hen and stag parties spend bucket loads of money on bucket loads of booze and then fall out onto the street where they pay £8 for a set of head phones – think of the hair! – and proceed to girate to their own tune devoid of class or intellect.  Perfect!  Essential Edinburgh cleans up at the hands of their own.  Further evidence, once more, of man, the superior race …  Meanwhile, these little green men in search of intelligent life?  They’re heading for the Primate House at Edinburgh Zoo – an establishment which imprisons wild animals for human entertainment.

Cynical or what?  I despair of the world today and, I have no doubt, I shall continue to do so as 2019 beckons.  In the words of my beloved Pop, though, we fight on ever hopeful that, one day, it will all fall into place …

‘For when night’s pillow nuzzles back the day
The only light you get to keep – is the love you gave away.’

Becoming The Supervet, Noel Fitzpatrick.

Ben Fogle, Noel Fitzpatrick … faith restored.

This is Trish, signing off – and wishing one and all a very Happy Christmas!