… no I didn’t get a sable under my tree but violet creams were definitely the present du jour, along with a rather fabulous crushed raspberry coloured quilted hot water bottle cover. This Christmas I battened down the hatches and spent 12 days esconced with several good books, plenty of hot milk and a couple of box sets of DVDs supplied by the daughters – bliss. I was also intrigued by the press response to the cold weather. Am I not alone in remembering intensely cold winters – as I child I grew up in a home without central heating. We were sent to bed with bed socks, hot water bottles, two blankets and a quilt piled up with just our eyes and ears showing. Actually not much has changed for me – except the bed socks are now cashmere rather than hand made by my grandfather from odd scraps. It seems we have forgotten how to keep warm.
Sir John Everett Millais, Sleeping, c.1865
I returned to work, refreshed and revitalised – and then suddenly realised we have less than three months to go before we open. I’m feeling strangely calm, is this normal? Surely I should be worrying about something? Or is it simply that at this stage, the show WILL go on – with me or without me? I suppose it’s a bit like sending your child to school – once through the school gates the responsibility is handed over to someone else, and so it is with the exhibition. My diary seems strangely empty as I’m not needed at meetings, decisions are being made elsewhere and I can concentrate on writing articles and gearing up for installation. If I feel slightly lost now – how on earth will I feel when the exhibition closes…………….?