Four-eyes

Someone has run off with my Santa hat, so I had to go without.

If you thought this would be pictures of happy people unwrapping Christmas gifts, or stuffing their faces with Christmas lunch, you are going to be disappointed. I decided that Christmas day was a self-imposed ‘no-camera day’. Apart from one Merry Christmas video to the family, access to technology was limited — and the video took at least five takes owing to technical problems with Ginger’s phone (operator error really, but I’m feeling generous).

It was a quiet Christmas. Ginger’s parents were away, Katie is hiking in Ecuador, and other family members are scattered to the four winds visiting relatives. So it was only Ginger, Alek, Lanie, and myself at home on Christmas morning.

I’ve taken to buying goats, and micro-loans … the donations make a difference to someone with a need rather than some unnecessary gift bought just for the sake of being seen to buy it.

The trouble with Christmas for me is that everyone has pretty much what they need, and things people want are either prohibitively expensive, specialist purchases, or both. As it turned out, the things on our gift lists were fairly modest, comprising practical things we’d normally make do without but were very helpful or much appreciated.

I have same problem when it comes to gifts for my family in the UK, they have what they need. Therefore, unless I think of a really appropriate gift — which does happen every now and then — I’ve taken to buying goats, and micro-loans on their behalf. They probably think I’m mad, but I’d like to hope that the donations make a difference to someone with a need rather than some unnecessary gift bought just for the sake of being seen to buy it.

After unwrapping our presents we decamped to Susan and Dennis’ place for lunch. Sickness had taken its toll on the lunch numbers, so there was only seven of us. I had a great time, and the depleted numbers meant I won both the after lunch games we played (I mention this because I am normally trounced by the many eager game-playing members of the family. So, I’ll enjoy this brief, probably unrepeatable moment of gaming success while I can).

Boxing Day in the UK; December 26th or St. Stephen’s Day here in the US, I was Feeling the need to take at least one picture (and my fumbling over the controls of the camera show that I need a lot more practice with it) so I took the easy route out, and shot some pictures at my desk. I am that lazy (it’s also below freezing outside).

Here’s the details on some of the items of swag

Ginger got a swanky Fitbit to replace her Flex (no pictures). It gives her a lot more health / exercise information which is useful for her exercise regimen. She also received some pretty blue glass from the kids.

Lanie bought me the special glasses I’m wearing at the top of this post. They have exchangeable magnification lenses to help me with close-up work and include a light for working in those small dark places one finds oneself in — like inside the washer, where up to now I’ve had to try and work blind.

Photograph of a brass Zippo lighter with a butane insert

Ginger bought me this brass lighter for those occasions when I want a little more bling than my everyday carry silver colored lighter case. I guess I should have wiped the insert clean.

Ginger bought me this brass lighter for those occasions when I need a little more bling than my everyday carry silver colored lighter case. I’ve yet to decide if I’ll retire the silver case or not, I think this brass case needs a bit of use to give it a well loved and worn look. So far it’s only collected a few scratches, it needs a lot more to give it character.

My main present from Ginger — new speakers for my desk. The lower quality Logitech one’s I had will be moved to the workshop.

Finally my main present from Ginger was this pair of desk-top speakers. I spent ages going through reviews before I selected these to go on my list. They are a luxury item that I wouldn’t be able to justify buying for myself, my old Logitech speakers worked fine — though they weren’t very high quality. This pair are more than good enough for my modest needs (before some audiophile picks holes in them).

Copyright © 2017 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.