‘Ear we go again

Well it’s Tuesday and I am all of a jitter. You see I’ve been given a possible date for a bit of surgery over at Galway General Hospital. I’ve had a few dates over the last 12 months but circumstances have made it so that it wasn’t to be. (Things like Snow, multi injuries from Croagh Patrick, Norovirus, Auzzie flu etc.) Thankfully I am not in any real pain just a little discomfort and also some frustration with being limited with some of the things I can eat but all this will be cleared up by Thursday night if all goes well.

The radio show has now improved because I no longer spend the entire 2 hours alone as a young News presenter has joined the show and spends the last hour with me so the format has (In my opinion and that of some listeners) improved. I now play lots of music in the first hour then it’s the news and the remainder of the show it music with chat about anything. All this is thanks to the Lady Eleanor

There is much work going on in St Joseph Total redecoration renewal of the smoke detectors and the CO detector. (If the weather would permit the exterior will be repainted and some new flower troughs constructed, planted and positioned. The flowers are at the seedling stage at the moment. Having said all that we have decided to take a year off next year to do the things that retired people do.

Well I’ll call it a day for now and hopefully I’ll add another blog after my visit to Galway

Till then Keep smiling and spread a little sunshine.


Christmas 2017 THE ANSWERS














1 Carl and the Passions changed band name to what Beach Boys

2 How many rings on the Olympic flag Five

3 What colour is vermilion a shade of Red

4 King Zog ruled which country Albania

5 What colour is Spock’s blood Green

6 Where in your body is your patella Knee ( it’s the kneecap )

7 Where can you find London bridge today USA ( Arizona )

8 What spirit is mixed with ginger beer in a Moscow mule Vodka

9 Who was the first man in space Yuri Gagarin

10 What would you do with a Yashmak Wear it – it’s an Arab veil

11 Who betrayed Jesus to the Romans Judas Escariot

12 Which animal lays eggs Duck billed platypus

13 On television what was Flipper Dolphin

14 Who’s band was The Quarrymen John Lenon

15 Which was the most successful Grand National horse Red Rum

16 Who starred as the Six Million Dollar Man Lee Majors

17 In the song Waltzing Matilda – What is a Jumbuck Sheep

18 Who was Dan Dare’s greatest enemy in the Eagle Mekon

19 What is Dick Grayson better known as Robin (Batman and Robin)

20 What was given on the fourth day of Christmas Calling birds

21 What was Skippy ( on TV ) The bush kangaroo

22 What does a funambulist do Tightrope walker

23 What is the name of Dennis the Menace’s dog Gnasher

24 What are bactrians and dromedaries Camels (one hump or two)

25 Who played The Fugitive David Jason

26 Who was the King of Swing Benny Goodman

27 Who was the first man to fly across the channel Louis Bleriot

28 Who starred as Rocky Balboa Sylvester Stallone

29 In which war was the charge of the Light Brigade Crimean

30 Who invented the television John Logie Baird

31 Who would use a mashie niblick Golfer

32 In the song who killed Cock Robin Sparrow

33 What do deciduous trees do Lose their leaves in winter

34 In golf what name is given to the No 3 wood Spoon

35 If you has caries who would you consult Dentist – its tooth decay

36 What other name is Mellor’s famously known by Lady Chatterlys Lover

37 What did Jack Horner pull from his pie Plum

38 How many feet in a fathom Six

39 which film had song Springtime for Hitler The Producers

40 Name the legless fighter pilot of ww2 Douglas Bader

41 What was the name of inn in Treasure Island Admiral Benbow

42 What was Erich Weiss better known as Harry Houdini

43 Who sailed in the Nina – Pinta and Santa Maria Christopher Columbus

44 Which leader died in St Helena Napoleon Bonaparte

45 Who wrote Gone with the Wind Margaret Mitchell

46 What does ring a ring a roses refer to The Black Death

47 Whose nose grew when he told a lie Pinocchio

48 Who has won the most Oscars Walt Disney

49 What would a Scotsman do with a spurtle Eat porridge (it’s a spoon)

50 Which award has the words for valour on it Victoria Cross

Christmas Quiz 2017

This is it the 2017 Christmas quiz Usual rules

Good luck









1 Carl and the Passions changed band name to what Beach Boys

2 How many rings on the Olympic flag Five

3 What colour is vermilion a shade of Red

4 King Zog ruled which country Albania

5 What colour is Spock’s blood Green

6 Where in your body is your patella Knee ( it’s the kneecap )

7 Where can you find London bridge today USA ( Arizona )

8 What spirit is mixed with ginger beer in a Moscow mule Vodka

9 Who was the first man in space Yuri Gagarin

10 What would you do with a Yashmak Wear it – it’s an Arab veil

11 Who betrayed Jesus to the Romans Judas Escariot

12 Which animal lays eggs Duck billed platypus

13 On television what was Flipper Dolphin

14 Who’s band was The Quarrymen John Lenon

15 Which was the most successful Grand National horse Red Rum

16 Who starred as the Six Million Dollar Man Lee Majors

17 In the song Waltzing Matilda – What is a Jumbuck Sheep

18 Who was Dan Dare’s greatest enemy in the Eagle Mekon

19 What is Dick Grayson better known as Robin (Batman and Robin)

20 What was given on the fourth day of Christmas Calling birds

21 What was Skippy ( on TV ) The bush kangaroo

22 What does a funambulist do Tightrope walker

23 What is the name of Dennis the Menace’s dog Gnasher

24 What are bactrians and dromedaries Camels (one hump or two)

25 Who played The Fugitive David Jason

26 Who was the King of Swing Benny Goodman

27 Who was the first man to fly across the channel Louis Bleriot

28 Who starred as Rocky Balboa Sylvester Stallone

29 In which war was the charge of the Light Brigade Crimean

30 Who invented the television John Logie Baird

31 Who would use a mashie niblick Golfer

32 In the song who killed Cock Robin Sparrow

33 What do deciduous trees do Lose their leaves in winter

34 In golf what name is given to the No 3 wood Spoon

35 If you has caries who would you consult Dentist – its tooth decay

36 What other name is Mellor’s famously known by Lady Chatterlys Lover

37 What did Jack Horner pull from his pie Plum

38 How many feet in a fathom Six

39 which film had song Springtime for Hitler The Producers

40 Name the legless fighter pilot of ww2 Douglas Bader

41 What was the name of inn in Treasure Island Admiral Benbow

42 What was Erich Weiss better known as Harry Houdini

43 Who sailed in the Nina – Pinta and Santa Maria Christopher Columbus

44 Which leader died in St Helena Napoleon Bonaparte

45 Who wrote Gone with the Wind Margaret Mitchell

46 What does ring a ring a roses refer to The Black Death

47 Whose nose grew when he told a lie Pinocchio

48 Who has won the most Oscars Walt Disney

49 What would a Scotsman do with a spurtle Eat porridge (it’s a spoon)

50 Which award has the words for valour on it Victoria Cross


Still Rambling

There’s an election in the offing and there has just been one in the U.K. I am a little confused but wasn’t the last one for local Councillors? You know the people who represent the population on the Local Council. Those who run the refuse collection, street lighting, parks and gardens, etc. etc.. So just what did that election have to do with Theresa May, Jeremy Corben and the others in Parliament? To see the TV and the subsequent propaganda you could expect to see Boris Johnson humping dustbins and Amber Rudd digging the gardens and cutting the grass verges on the roadside. But no really it’s got next to nothing to do with them.

The latest election (one which, believe it or not, I still have a vote in) appears to be of the usual conflicting views however I ask should I be voting for the person to represent me or for the Prime Minister that I would like to really mess me up? Surely once again I should be voting for the best person to represent me in the Palace of Westminster. Let us not forget that there are 650 MPs and I should be voting for one of them. Theresa May is only one of them and she represents Maidenhead and Jeremy Corben represents Islington, So I urge people to think carefully before you cast your “X” The leader of the successful party can be sorted out later.


For a few months now I have been presenting a local radio show aided and abetted by my friend and cousin Peter. It is usually good fun and it does give a good reason to get up on a Monday morning. We have a simple format – the ramblings of two old blokes interspaced with some music. Some people enjoy it so feel free to listen in. We are there from 9 -11 am each Monday on Claremorris Community Radio 96.4 FM or WWW.ccr946.ie/live. There’s nothing heavy and we often follow a theme for each show.


We have been down to the bog and the turf has been cut so now we need some good weather so that it can be turned then footed (piled into stacks to finish drying) and brought home for the winter. We have been told that this is the last year for this bog for a number of years so the search is now on for next year supplier. Hopefully we will be lucky.


I quite often say this but I promise I will try harder to write on here more often but for now bye.


Christmas Quiz 2016

Well here it is – the big one

same as ever some easy some not so easy and some……

to get the answers simply run the cursor over the space after the question

but only after you have tried the question

Happy Christmas

  1. In what country, the world’s seventh largest by geographical area, is Christmas known as Bada Din (the big day)? India
  2. Christmas Island, in the Indian Ocean, is a territory of which country? Australia
  3. ‘Three Kings Day’ is known by what numerical name (that’s ‘name’, not ‘date’) in Britain?Twelfth Night
  4. The North Pole, said to be Santa’s home, is located in which ocean? Arctic Ocean
  5. ‘And all the bells on earth shall ring, on Christmas day in the morning…’ is from which Christmas carol? I Saw Three Ships
  6. Marzipan is made (conventionally in the western world) mainly from sugar and the flour or meal of which nut? Almond
  7. What is the technical name of Mistletoe plant genus, and also Latin for glutinous? Viscum(hence the words viscous and viscosity, referring to semi-solid/semi-liquid and thick sticky substances – derived from the sticky quality of mistletoe berries, and also an early word for birdlime, a sticky substance made from the berries, used to trap birds)
  8. Peter Auty sang Walking In The Air in what film? The Snowman
  9. Which Christmas condiment is made from fruit sometimes referred to as marshworts? Cranberry sauce
  10. Which American-born English poet, having first names Thomas Stearns, wrote the poem The Cultivation Of Christmas Trees? T S Eliot
  11. Which Christmas slogan was introduced by Clarissa Baldwin of Dogs Trust in 1978? A Dog Is For Life, Not Just For Christmas
  12. Which British monarch (born 1865, died 1936) introduced the custom of giving thousands of Christmas puddings to staff? King George V
  13. In the UK it is traditionally believed that eating a what each day of the twelve days of Christmas brings happiness the following year: Sausage; Mince pie; Carrot; or Turkey drumstick? Mince pie
  14. The fortified wine drink Sherry is named after what town? Jerez (Spain – in Spanish, sherry is called Vino de Jerez)
  15. In Coldplay’s 2010 Christmas single video, the Latin phrase Credo Elvem Etiam Vivere (seen above the stage) loosely means what (combining an ironic rock’n’roll myth, with a seasonal sentiment popularised by Greg Lakes’s 1975 Christmas hit – and for two bonus points: name the Greg Lake song, and the Coldplay 2010 Christmas single)? I Believe Elvis Lives (Greg Lake’s song – I Believe In Father Christmas; Coldplay’s 2010 Xmas single – Christmas Lights)
  16. What is the surname of the family in the 1989 film ‘National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation’? Griswold
  17. Who composed the music known as The Nutcracker Suite, for the Christmas themed ballet The Nutcracker, premiered in St Petersburg, 1892? Tchaikovsky
  18. Which southern central US state, whose capital city has the same name, was the last to recognize Christmas as an official holiday? Oklahoma
  19. In which country, the largest of its continent, is it said that finding a spider web on Christmas morning brings good luck, and so Christmas trees are decorated with artificial spider webs? Ukraine
  20. What day of the week was Christmas day in the year 2000 (in the conventional western calendar)? Monday
  21. Charles Dickens is said to have considered the names Little Larry and Puny Pete for which character? (Bonus point: in which Dickens novel did the character appear?) Tiny Tim – A Christmas Carol
  22. Under which Puritan leader did the English parliament pass a law banning Christmas in 1647? Oliver Cromwell
  23. Name the two administrative and ex-colonial regions of China for whom Christmas day (as at 2010) remains a legal public holiday, whereas in the main country it is not? Hong Kong and Macau
  24. In which European country is it said that malicious goblins called Kallikantzoroi (or Kallikantzari – singular Kallikantzoros) play troublesome pranks at Christmas? Greece (the name is thought to derive from kalos-kentauros, meaning ‘beautiful centaur’)
  25. Very loosely related to Christmas, the predatory animal ‘uncia uncia’ is better known by what name? Snow Leopard
  26. Which traditional Christmas plant was once so revered by early Britons that it had to be cut with a golden sickle? Mistletoe
  27. In the song ‘The Twelve Days Of Christmas’, how many swans were a-swimming? Seven
  28. What former Egyptian president was born on Christmas day in 1918? Anwar Sadat
  29. Driving Home For Christmas was a 1988 hit single for which singer? Chris Rea
  30. Who composed the Lieutenant Kijé orchestral suite, for a 1934 film of the same name, including the Troika movement, commonly used as Christmas theme music, usually with prominent sleigh bells? Prokofiev (Sergei Sergeyevich Prokofiev)
  31. In Mexico, it is said that wearing what colour underwear on New Year’s Eve ensures finding new love the following year? Red
  32. The Latin word meaning ‘coming’ gave us what term which still refers to the coming Christmas period, and also to a particular tradition popular with children? Advent (as in advent calendars – the ‘coming’ basically refers to the birth of Christ)
  33. In which country does Santa have his own personal postcode HOH OHO? Canada
  34. In 2004, the post office of which country (international dialling code 49) gave away twenty million free scented stickers, to make Christmas cards smell like fir trees, cinammon, gingerbread or honey wax? Germany
  35. ‘Nadolig Llawen’ means Merry Christmas in which western European language? Welsh
  36. ‘Olive the Other… (what?)’, is a Christmas book by Vivian Walsh and J Otto Seibold? Reindeer
  37. In which country, an archipelago of 6,852 islands, is it considered inappropriate to send red Christmas cards? Japan (because funeral notices are customarily printed in red)
  38. The early pagan religious winter festival celebrated by archaic Scandinavian and Germanic people, later absorbed into Christmas celebrations, is still referred to in what alternative word for the Christmas season? Yule (or Yule-tide)
  39. What is the chemical formula of snow? H2O
  40. Which charity in 1949 was the first to produce a Christmas card? UNICEF (originally the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund, now called United Nations Children’s Fund)
  41. What red-blooming Christmas plant came originally from Mexico? Poinsettia (Euphorbia Pulcherrima)
  42. Brandy is made from distilling what? Wine
  43. What was Girls Aloud’s 2002 UK Christmas number one single? Sound of the Underground
  44. Which famous comedy double-act partner made the first ever UK mobile phone call, New Year’s Day, 1985? Ernie Wise
  45. White Christmas, a cake made of coconut, crisped rice and dried fruit, is popular in which country? Australia
  46. Quaid-e-Azam’s Birthday is a 25th December celebration in which country? Pakistan (also known as Muhammad Ali Jinnah he is considered the country’s founder)
  47. Who is the narrator in the 2000 film The Grinch Who Stole Christmas? Anthony Hopkins
  48. What was the cyclone named that hit Darwin, Australia, in Christmas 1974? Tracy
  49. Pine needles are said to be a good source of which vitamin? C
  50. What drink invented by Francis Showering has a fawn mascot? Babycham
  51. What creature, noted for feeding on its berries, is linked by name to the mistletoe plant? Mistle thrush
  52. In which Christmas carol does this line feature: “Bring me flesh, and bring me wine, bring me pine logs hither”? Good King Wenceslas
  53. What is the birth sign of people born on 25 December? Capricorn
  54. The Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus on or around 1 January celebrates specifically what happening to the baby Jesus? Circumcision
  55. Complete the famous rhyming line which follows: “At Christmas play and make good cheer, … ? For Christmas comes but once a year (from Thomas Tusser’s instructional poem A Hundred Good Points of Husbandry, The Farmer’s Daily Diet, written in 1557 – also the source of ‘A fool and his money are soon parted’)
  56. ‘Full of Eastern Promise’ is an advertising slogan of what exotically positioned chocolate product? Fry’s Turkish Delight
  57. Which poem written by Clement Moore was originally titled A Visit from Saint Nicholas? The Night Before Christmas
  58. What was the title of the first Christmas TV special Peanuts cartoon? A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)
  59. What celebratory receptacle is falsely claimed to have been modeled on the breast of Marie Antoinette? Champage coupe (or champagne saucer, more loosely, champagne glass – the flat saucery one, not the long thin pointy one)
  60. Which author and creator of Jekyll and Hyde, gave his birthday by formal deed to Anne Ide because she disliked her own birthday of December 25th? Robert Louis Stevenson
  61. What animal is the Scandinavian Christmas Julbock symbol? Goat (precisely a Yule Goat)
  62. Christmas Crackers was the first Christmas edition of which popular UK comedy series? Only Fools and Horses
  63. What song topped the UK charts at Christmas in 1957 and in a medley version in 1978? Mary’s Boy Child (Harry Belafonte and Boney M, respectively)
  64. Which hugely popular actor was born on Christmas day 1899? Humphrey Bogart
  65. What British spacecraft was lost on Mars at Christmas 2003? Beagle 2
  66. What was Queen’s 1984 Christmas single called? Thank God it’s Christmas
  67. American cartoonist Thomas Nast is credited with creating the traditional image of which popular Christmas character? Santa Claus (Father Christmas)
  68. Jackie Wilson’s re-issued song Reet Petite became the 1986 UK Christmas number one after helping to advertise what brand? Levi’s (Levi Strauss & Co)
  69. What is the name of Dorothy Gale’s dog in The Wizard of Oz? Toto
  70. Born Christmas day 1908, by what name was gay icon author of The Naked Civil Servant popularly known? Quentin Crisp (born Denis Charles Pratt)
  71. What is a baby Turkey more correctly called, other than a chick? Poult
  72. La Befana is the legendary character who delivers Christmas presents to children in which country? Italy (Befana loosely means a witch)
  73. Who is the central businessman character in the film It’s a Wonderful Life? George Bailey(played by James Stewart)
  74. In technical astronomical terms what is the duration of the winter solstice; an instant, a day, three months, or six months? An instant (in the northern hemisphere between 21-22 Dec each year; in the southern hemisphere between 21-22 June)
  75. What Christmas-time song did James Pierpont compose in 1857? Jingle Bells (or, One Horse Open Sleigh)
  76. What is the title of biggest selling Christmas single, globally? White Christmas (by Bing Crosby)
  77. Gwyl San Steffan is the name for 26th December (St Stephen’s Day or Boxing Day) in which country? Wales
  78. Which actress singer who charted with Santa Baby and starred as Catwoman died on Christmas day 2008? Eartha Kitt
  79. What Christmas item takes its name from the old French word estincelle, meaning spark? Tinsel
  80. Who is regarded as the first Christian martyr? St Stephen
  81. Kiritimati, the first inhabited place to experience each New Year, is more commonly known as what? Christmas Island
  82. What Paul McCartney hit song video featured the First World War Christmas Truce meeting of German and British soldiers in no-man’s land between the front line trenches? Pipes of Peace
  83. Who was said to have presented the baby Jesus with Frankincense? Balthazar
  84. In which city was the Salvation Army founded? London (1865, orginally the Christian Mission, by William Booth)
  85. When the Julian calendar was switched to the Gregorian calendar how many days were dropped? Eleven
  86. What drink advert launched the slogan ‘The Right One’ in 1970? Martini
  87. What is Virgil Hilts’ nickname in the film The Great Escape? The Cooler King
  88. Before the tradition of hanging stockings up at Christmas what did Dutch children hang by the fireside? Shoes
  89. In which country is it a tradition to hide all brooms in the house on Christmas Eve? Norway(according to legend, witches would steal them otherwise
  90. Who wrote the songs for the 1954 film White Christmas? Irving Berlin
  91. Which US President banned Christmas trees from the White House? Theodore Roosevelt
  92. How many courses are there traditionally in a Ukrainian Christmas Eve supper? Twelve (each one is dedicated to an apostle)
  93. In the song The Twelve Days of Christmas, how many pipers are there? Eleven
  94. From what does the month of December take its name? Ten (Latin, decem – it was the tenth month of the early Roman calendar)
  95. What did Scottish students take from Westminster Abbey on Christmas day 1950? The Coronation Stone (or Stone of Scone, or Stone of Destiny)
  96. The surname Chandler derives from the making or selling of what? Candles
  97. Who are the four ghosts in Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol? Christmas Past, Christmas Present, Christmas Yet to Come, and Jacob Marley (one point for each correctly named ghost, and a bonus point for all four)
  98. What liqueur goes into making a ‘snowball’ cocktail? Advocaat (or advokatt, pronounced ‘advocar’ – normally a blend of brandy, egg yolks, vanilla and sometimes other ingredients – award yourself a bonus point if you dare order one next time you go to the bar.)
  99. What is the English title of the carol written in 1818 by Austrian priest Josef Mohr originally called Stille Nacht? Silent Night
  100. In Victorian England what people were popularly called robins because of their red uniforms? Postmen

Christmas quiz 2015

Well here it is this year’s quiz

You may cheat -if you want to

You may Google – if you wish

Or you may just look at the answers by highlighting over the square brackets

So ready – here we go


  1. How many packs of cards are needed for a game of Canasta? [Two]
  2. Which soap has one of the pub “The Malt Shovel?” [Emmerdale]
  3. What is the lowest weight in boxing? [Light featherweight]
  4. Who was Sonny’s singing partner? [Cher]
  5. Where would you find the Mount of the Moon and the Girdle of Venus? [Palm of your hand]
  6. What was Al Capone’s first name? [Alphonse]
  7. Where would you most likely to use the inventions of Kenneth Wood? [Kitchen]
  8. In darts what is the lowest score from three different trebles? [18]
  9. Who wrote “A Brief History of Time”? [Stephen Hawking]
  10. Smee was the boson who was the Pirate? [Captain Hook]
  11. What is dried in an Oast House? [Hops]
  12. Which Pub sells Newton & Ridley? [Rovers Return]
  13. What is a group of porpoises called? [School]
  14. What colour did all lupins used to be? [Blue]
  15. What is a young badger called? [Cub]
  16. Which city was built on seven hills? [Rome]
  17. What is a painted lady? [Butterfly]
  18. What is “mal de mer”? [Sea sickness]
  19. Who is Bruce Wayne? [Batman]
  20. What is Ozzy Ozbourne’s first name? [John]
  21. What do the letters RAM stand for? [Random Access Memory]
  22. What does a man do on two legs a woman do sitting down and a dog on three legs (keep it clean) [shake hands]
  23. When was the first appendix operation performed? [1885]
  24. What was Elvis’s first film? [Love me Tender]
  25. What does an Arab Horse have less of than any other horse? [One vertebra less]
  26. Who was the only English pope? [Nicholas Breakspear Pope Adrian IV]
  27. What colour is the ribbon of the Victoria Cross [Purple]
  28. Which days did the Boomtown Rats not like? [Mondays]
  29. What does beer contain which ale traditionally did not? [Hops]
  30. Name three African countries beginning with Z [Zambia, Zimbabwe, Zaire]

Well we’ve been hammered with all the Poppy day propaganda (although not much from the Poppy day organisation [wasn’t it once the Haige Fund?]) wonderful pictures which could be called “Click Bait” (a method of gaining thousands of “Likes” and “Shares” so the site is more appealing to advertisers therefore a money spinner and not always for the benefit of others) They say it is in aid of the British service personnel but what about the millions of civilians killed, maimed, made homeless because of war? Looking at the news it would appear that we have no time for them at all. We make up stories about the grand houses and cars the refugees are given the vast amount of money they are given and all the jobs they are taking. In our heart of hearts we know that this is all poppycock and not true. However the old saying is coming to pass “give a dog a bad name – then kick him”

And so next is Christmas the second most important season of the Christian calendar. All will be self-righteous and pontificating about how Christmas is for the kids, how much they spend on presents, how drunk they plan to get, some will even to calling it “Winterville” or “Wintertide” in order to be “politically correct” what tosh! Christmas has become the time for businesses to make a mint and to fleece the citizens of every last penny. Over Christmas I wonder how many will even step inside a church and say – even quietly under their breath – Happy Birthday Jesus.


The bells of waiting Advent ring,

The tortoise stove is lit again

And lamp-oil light across the night

Has caught the streaks of winter rain

In many a stained glass window sheen

From Crimson Lake to Hookers Green

The holly in the windy hedge

And round the Manor House the yew

Will soon be stripped to deck the ledge

The altar, font and arch and pew

So that villagers can say

“The church looks nice” on Christmas Day

Provincial public houses blaze

And Corporation tramcars clang,

On lighted tenements I gaze

Where paper decorations hang,

And bunting in the red Town Hall

Says “Merry Christmas to You All”

And girls in slacks remember Dad

And Oafish louts remember Mum,

And sleepless children’s hearts are glad

And Christmas-Morning bells say “Come”

Even to shining ones who dwell

Safe in the Dorchester Hotel

And is it true? And is it true

This most tremendous tale of all,

Seen in a stained-glass window’s hue

A Baby in an ox’s stall?

The maker of the stars and sea

Became a Child on earth for me?

And is it true? For if it is,

No loving fingers tying strings

Around the tissued fripperies

The sweet and silly Christmas things,

Bath salts and inexpensive scent

And hideous tie so kindly meant

No love that in a family dwells,

No carolling in frosty air,

Nor all the steeple shaking bells

Can with this simple truth compare —

That God was Man in Palestine

And lives today in Bread and Wine

John Betjeman.

Happy Christmas everyone