Jaqui's Daily Blog

Happy New Year and a Quiet Night In

It is always a pleasure and a great surprise when, completely out of the blue, I meet someone who tells me he or she reads the Daily Blog. The person invariably adds: "I don't read it EVERY day, of course..." I am humble enough to be grateful that they read it at all.

Young Sam is too young to be interested in the Daily Blog which does not carry, for the average nine year old, the same fascination as Minecraft. Over our Second Christmas, he helped me install something called Block Craft onto the Us-Pad. As far as I could tell this was more or less the same as Minecraft but had the advantage of being completely free which, parsimonious pensioner that I am, I felt was a result. Sam and James installed a few buildings for me and created two block-like people who stroll round the block in a disturbing way, like predatory prowlers, casing the joint.

So, how does Block Craft compare with Minecraft?" I asked the Young Expert. "It's fine for you, Nanna," was the considered response, "Because you are a beginner." Well, there really was no arguing with that, I suppose. My Tutor in All Things Block-Related explained further: "Block Craft tells you what to do," he said, sagely, "With Minecraft you have to use your own imagination..." He regarded me, kindly. I didn't like to ask how long it would take me to advance from Beginner Status and develop greater powers of imagination.

I've always prided myself on having a vivid imagination, too. Do I not dream in glorious technicolour? Am I not the inventor of many a game requiring not a single piece of equipment, not even a pencil and paper, but just Flights of Fancy? Have I not conjured up many a bedtime story for assorted grandchildren, relying solely on a collection of imaginary people and objects? Why, as a child trying to stop my Little Sister going to sleep and so leaving me in the throes of certain nightmares, I invented a whole series of tall tales around a magic tin of "Passepartout Polish."

Last night, New Year's Eve, I needed plenty of imagination to throw a mantle of magic over a Quiet Night In. I was reminded of that classic episode of "Porridge" in which old lag Stanley Fletcher, brilliantly played by Ronnie Barker, comforts new boy Richard Beckinsale by thinking aloud all the excitements they could be enjoying - before settling for a "quiet night in." That was Mr B and I last night. We could have gone clubbing, or to a posh dinner-dance, or joined some raucous revel. Or, we agreed, we could just have A Quiet Night In.

We went to bed early, well before the Witching Hour. Mr B turned on the radio so that we could hear the chimes of Big Ben tolling the New Year in with impressive chiming. A few minutes after his head touched the pillow, he was sound asleep, impervious to the manically festive chatter on the radio. I was still awake, however, and prepared to see the New Year in on behalf of us both. At about twenty to twelve, the sleep button on the radio kicked in and silence reigned in the bedroom. Now how would I know when 2015 segued into 2016?

I had resigned myself to guess-work when, from down on the beach, the sound of celebratory fireworks - the perfect signal to the start of a New Year. I might not have been able to see them but the Sounds Off were enough. In my imagination, the fireworks fizzed, soared, sparkled, cascaded and showered the sky in glorious colour. Welcome 2016!

A Happy New Year to all my faithful readers. It doesn't matter to me if you read my Random Ramblings every day, every week, once a month or once in a Blue Moon - I thank you for caring enough about my daily life to want to share it. I wish you everything you wish yourself in 2016. Have lots of fun, lots of crazy experiences and lots of adventures along the way.

Alternatively, a Quiet Night In has much to recommend it...

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Christine | Reply 03.01.2016 08:41

I love to read "your ramblings" Health and happiness for 2016 Hilary's mum cx

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Latest comments

23.04 | 20:15

lovely and heartwarming - an inspiration to us all x

09.03 | 12:07

Love this story told as ever beautifully.x

10.11 | 21:31

What a super account of a special event. I loved meeting you last night and seeing your creation come together. I’m so pleased you got so much from the activity

07.09 | 13:17

I have broad shoulders x

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