Column: Love it or hate it, it’s twixmas

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Well, we’re officially in twixmas, apparently.

Eh? Yes, it’s the time between Christmas and New Year. Like marmite, it’s a four day period you either love or hate. For some it’s a boring hiatus between festivities; for others it’s a short, welcome return to near normal.

Which camp do you fall into? I’ll lay my cards on the table and fess up to one of the kill joys who actually likes the return to my usual routine. You can have too much of a good thing sometimes, I think. Enjoying the traditional two or three day break is one thing, but stringing it out to a near fortnight is not for me.

It’s great to have some extra time with the nearest and dearest, to relax, have some family time and to chill out at the end of a year of hard work.

But if I’m taking holiday time, the dark, days of December are not when I choose to be off (unless of course a sunshine break is in the offing!) I fear that SAD syndrome would take over and I would spend those extra days slumped on the sofa working my way through the left-over Christmas goodies.

And there are some advantages of getting back to normal at twixmas. Like many who have a job that involves working what was once called “anti social hours” - how quaint that sounds now - I relish the quiet roads, being able to get a seat on the usually packed train and not having to queue for ages for the early morning shot of coffee en route to the office. When the rest of the world virtually comes to a standstill- emergency services and retail workers being among the relatively few exceptions these days - it is easier to find time for those pesky tasks that require half an hour without interuptions from ringing phones or a rapidly filling in-box. Sad, I know.

For some too the extended break only strings out what is a very difficult time of year. Not everyone enjoys close family relationships. Fractured families make for fractious Christmases. It can be a lonely time for the elderly, and others, destined to spend Christmas on their own. For them, nromality brings with it a sense of relief.

For those in the opposite camp, well I don’t know how their sanity, waistlines or livers survive two weeks of full-on festivities. And if continuing with the making merry isn’t enough, having shopped til they dropped before Christmas, they are back in the malls from Boxing Day - or online on Christmas Day itself. Mad!

But each to their own.