It’s been a while since I have done a ‘Room 101’ post, mainly because I was trying to grumble less (me being me, I haven’t done well and have just grumbled more verbally to people / myself instead). But something has happened to the British nation in the last fortnight which has prompted me to revive the ‘Room 101’ posts: they have all been hit my ‘Christmas Craziness’. I am typing whilst working from home, safely tucked away from the insanity which seems to be hitting the nation. But for the last couple of weeks, my commutes, work days and weekends have been heavily impacted by this sudden change in behaviour affecting the British Isles.
“What do you mean by Christmas Craziness?” you might ask. Well, it is a number of things. It started at the beginning of December with more obvious erratic driving, especially in the early morning; People driving faster, cutting past me on my bike even closer than normal and not bother to de-mist or de-ice their windows and effectively rendering themselves partially blind. Then the levels of traffic just rocketed, both morning and evening – I have struggled to get out my road end for the last two weeks where for months (at the exact same time of day), there was barely a car. Why people need to go to work at different times, I’m really not sure. Moving on to the shops, people have become far more pushy and completely unaware of those around them. Even more than normal, people keep stopping in the middle of shop walkways to chat and debate gift ideas (or stand glued to the spot looking bewildered and slightly scared) whilst everyone else piles-up behind them. Then, on the flip side, my commute has become full of people who seem have be almost devoid of energy. Commuters dawdle along through the tube veering from left to right all over the place (KEEP LEFT people!), walk out in front of traffic because they are paying even less attention to the road and generally look miserable even more than normal (Yes, that seems to be possible even in London!). The other day, two women even had a bit of a verbal altercation because they were fighting for a seat at Finsbury Park – the chap next to the free seat offered up his before there was any blood shed as I was too busy watching in amusement (I know, that’s not very nice of me).
This is not uncommon for this time of year, but it’s the thing I enjoy the least about Christmas. Everyone is trying to fit in shopping amongst their already busy lives and are out for bargains too as money is still tight. Then, once the shopping is done, the shining light of Christmas holidays means a large proportion of the population are in ‘hanging on’ mode from early December, struggling through each day at a time until they reach those days of lie-ins, lazing in front of the telly and binge-eating chocolate. At no other time of year you get so many people taking holiday at the same time, so we are never subjected to the compounded effect of so many people longing for some time off from the daily grind.
So, roll on Christmas for so many reasons. When it finally arrives, we’ll all be on holiday, the shopping will (obviously) have been completed and everyone can sit back and have a rest. Of course, I’m not expecting it to get any better afterwards because, of course, the ‘January Blues’ kick in. But at least after a fortnight off from work, I’ll have more energy to tolerate people again!