Picture: Anna/Simon Wright

Last night’s news…

The Queen and ‘senior royals’ received and thanked key workers at Windsor; the Salvation Army band played the old carol: ‘Deck the halls with boughs of holly, Fa-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la’

What’s this Fa-la-la-la-la…? Four theories:

  • It’s an expression of carefree joy,
  • The lazy songwriter couldn’t be bothered to write the words
  • The singer was forgetful
  • The song, originally sung in the pub, contained rude words/swearwords; the singers knew these words but were too polite to sing them.

The song continues: ‘Tis the season to be jolly, fa-la-la-la-la…’

Boris has told us: ‘Tis this season to be jolly? Tis the season to be jolly careful.’

Yesterday there were reasons to be jolly. After months of daily reported hospital admissions and deaths there were pictures of hope: the first people were cheerfully receiving their Covid vaccines. Hopefully by next Christmas Covid will be under control…

…I thought of friends receiving treatment for cancer. Their radiotherapy, chemotherapy, surgery will continue…

There was news of Steve Thompson, who helped England win the rugby world cup in 2003. He has early onset dementia. He can’t remember those rugby matches. He’s only 42.

Arlene Phillips – dancer, choreographer and former Strictly Come Dancing judge described her father’s battle with Alzheimer’s: ‘He’d… turn up at my house and he had no idea he’d walked there…He would worry that the police were coming for him or that someone had been into his flat to steal money…’

Covid, cancer, dementia…. We can continue to sing ‘fa-la-la-la-la’ as we live with carefree joy, lazy forgetfulness or shouting unprintable swearwords… as we all may do at different times…

Musing on the wisdom… ‘You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes… you ought to say, ‘if it is the Lord’s will we will live and do this or that…’’

Despite… because of everything I continue to believe in that personal greater power…

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