Festive Cheer & Bright New Year

Eye of the storm

Greetings, from my first blog post of the new year. How was your christmas and new years? Sick of people asking that question yet? How was your christmas and new years? How about now? If i’m honest, christmas has to be my top holiday of any given year.  This fondness has only grown over the year’s and has exponentially increased in my years living out of the country. My holiday season is the same every year. You might say its a bit of a ground hog day. ( Slipping that reference in early, you will come across this later in my post, keep it in mind readers.). Before the reminiscing begins, lets quickly discuss the troubles i encountered in travelling home. 

As anyone living this side of Europe is aware, we are under attack. By a bitch of storm that doesn’t seem to be going away. Seriously, it does feel that way doesn’t it? Looking out my window now i see mmm, rain, wind with a side of zero precent possibility il be venturing back out today.  In the build up towards the holiday season, the storm was in full swing. Now one thing you have to know about me is, i am oblivious to a lot of what goes on around me.  The storm had been cancelling and delaying flights for a full 3 days before i was due to fly home, did i have any iota regarding the escalating situation? did i feck.  I just rocked up to the airport ready to rumble.  The airport check in service was incredibly smooth considering the time of year and the airline ( ryan air, say what what what).  I managed to get all the way through to the departure lounge without a hiccup. Even managed to bump into a old friend i used to work with before (bonus!) Meave.  So we were able to keep each other company and bitch away to pass the time. Lining up for the flight, there was an incredible drunk Chinese american chick who was slurring her story of getting a few drinks to calm her nerves down before the flight. It must of been christmas. 

The flight itself was delayed by about 30 minutes. At this point i was aware of the weather outside so i should of start to consider what could be awaiting me on my journey. The flight itself, was a  rocking boat, the landing was the worst part, the plane jutting back and forth and side to side during the entire landing process. The handles of my chair had scratch my from my nails by the end of it.  Getting off the plane the usual happened, after carefully selecting our seats at the back of plane in order to speed up our departure, the ragging storm meant it was too unsafe to have a second stair well so everyone must depart from the front. Great. Let us just wait from the old man sitting next to us as he takes about a million years to get off his chair. Take your time buddy.  As the flight was delayed i presumed we were spared the clapping sound and trumpets until everyone on the plan started to clap with relief we actually managed to land.

Tradition is best

The build up to christmas brings one thing. Christmas shopping. Most people either love it or hate it. Il be honest. I love it, but i have very strong feelings about how good a gift should be which can make the task a bit harder then those who hit up boots and buy loads of deodorant sets to flog to everyone friend, aunt and cousin. I like to put thought into it. So after located a very thought out gift, i usually congratulate myself by buying myself a gift too. If you think I’m lying I'm afraid not, many of the gifts i gave out this year inspired some of my very recent possessions i now own. I don't even feel guilty. Its only awkward when someone notices. ‘Ray are you wearing the same perfume you bought me?, cause it is for woman’ * looks around awkwardly* NO!

Every Christmas eve i venture into Cork City centre with Sinead in toe for last minute christmas shopping. For those not from Cork, believe me i know what your thinking.  Hell on earth christmas shopping on christmas eve. You guys don't know cork, the city is dead, the streets are quiet its bloody well bliss. After a second coffee stop with Sinead to chat away and catch up we noticed that someone had the bright idea to erect a ferris wheel on the grand parade in the city centre. After some persuading on my end, Sinead reluctantly agreed to go on the thing. I had misty eyed thoughts of incredible panoramic views of cork city which could be boastfully posted to Instagram under the caption, home land home city, home slice etc.  What we got, was a face full of wind and rain, as we both cowered under our scarfs bursting with laughter at the terror of being on a ferris wheel while gale force winds smash the pod backwards and forwards.  In Sinead’s Defence she did say it would happen. 

Sinead & Myself on The Ferris Wheel of Wind

A lot of people always tend to moan. ‘Oh christmas is so boring, nothings open your trapped in doors with your family and its the same crap every year’. Is that what truly makes it crappy or what truly makes it awesome. Im in the latter group people.  Christmas day goes as follows in my house. You get up, exchange your gifts over christmas, get too see my nephews - see there delight and exchange gifts with them, all over breakfast. You get ready and your leisure, we hit our granddads on my mothers side where all the family come together ( I am part of a Irish family yawl so the house is heaving) . Exchange more gifts ( isn't getting stuff fun?) drink mulled wine and say your good byes to head home.  Then comes the lounging about playing with the stuff you got as presents and the preparations for the feast. 

The best dinner of the year comes next followed by a round of board games. In most families they can get very competitive in ours, they tend to get hilarious with the stupidity in us all coming to the forefront when put under pressure.  During one year’s round of taboo my Sister Claire Asked ‘ What happens when you open a door?’. I with out a moments thought shout out ‘ You go flying’.  You get the idea from there.  This Years game Articulated revealed that my sister and her boyfriend have a woeful knowledge of geography. This will be useful knowledge for all future games.  The day ends in front of the telly watching which ever christmas special. This is where i am relegated to another room to watch the Doctor Who christmas special as everyone else thinks its a bit crap. ( After this christmas special, i could almost be in agreement - while a pile of shit). The day usually ends with a movie and more food. Then you get the most peaceful night sleep of your life due to exhaustion and over eating. 

Its Ground hog Day

St Stephens day or as my english friends call it Boxing day is spent the exact same way every year. My family and friends like to get a fresh dose of humiliation by taking part in a extremely hard Pub Quiz every Stephen's day morning. This tradition has been going for more then a decade. God you lot must be fantastic in a quiz, right general knowledge junkies. Yes you might think that, but the answer is hell to the no. Every year without fail we come second last. Now i must point out that we only come second last.  Thats right, there is someone who comes below us. Which means we don't even get the booby prize. Although on one particularly full year, they called out our table number to collect said booby prize only to realise there mistake as i took to the stage and then got laughed at as i had to shamefully sit back down empty handed. I still blame Katie my sister and Sinead for that’ Thats us go on Ray, you go up!’ Fecker’s. This year the team was comprised of my sister Katie and her boyfriend Alex and my bestie Sinead.  You would think that we were a well rounded team, full of knowledge in unique areas ( Alex is a Greek for god sake) - but alas no, what place did we come? Second last. There was something different this year though, we came JOINT second last with another team. The other team, was filled by neighbours and Sinead's younger brother. Guess were all as stupid as each other.  Now we all had our questions where by we didn’t listen to each other and the right answer was put forward but we didn’t listen, but this is my blog so il moan about mine. The question was ‘Which american holiday is celebrated on the 2nd of February and also is known for being the title of a famous movie.  the conversation went as follows.

Me: ‘Ground hog Day’
The group: silence

Me: ‘Ground hog day’
The group: Quizzical eyebrows occasional “mmmmm” and more silence
Me: ‘ Suppose could be labour day’
The group: ‘Yes we’ll put that down’ All smiles from team as they scuttle down the answer
Me: ‘ I think its Groundhog Day though’
The group: Silence 
Me: ‘ FINE but i want it known that i think its Groundhog Day’

Feckers feckers feckers. I should also point out its a pub quiz so we do have a pint or two.   I think the drink is our downfall here, it give us a false sense of being right. 'How many kids are there in the sound of music. Katie, who would know it better says 7. I little drunk, no i think its 6. The problem with drink is that it makes any thing you say sound as if theres conviction behind your knowledge and it must be right. The problem with everyone else in the team, is they are also drinking and so think what your saying is right. Needless to say that was my bad. It was 7 oops.

Round of drinks at the quiz

Move your Bag, Sir

After the whirl wind ride home, the journey back was a little better. That was until i was aboard the Stansted express. Not feeling particularly well, i positioned my bag against a wall and took a seat a little away.  This was all fine until some twat getting off a Bishop Stortford, took issue with the fact i wasn't guarding my bag with a gun and 3 bouncers. It started with himself tutting loudly which grew to him trying to shame everyone who had there bag in this area to come move them. Some lady who didn’t want a fuzz came quickly and removed her bag. He then scanned the cabin to see who else he could pressure into bending to his will. Has he met me? I give him daggers, he asks is it my bag.

Me: ‘ Yes its my bag’
Himself: ‘ Come and move it now Sir’.
Me: ‘ No, i wont be doing that i can see it fine, its not in the way’.
Himself: ‘ Move it now sir’.
Me: ‘ No i am not moving my bag’
Himself: ‘ No you should move it now sir’
(Ok here is where i get annoyed)
Me: ‘ I  really don’t see why its any of your business, what gives you the right to ask me to move it or demand i move it?’. 
Himself: ‘I think you should come move it now sir.’ *clicks his fingers*
Me: ‘No, i wont. I will not give in to some grown man who thinks he can pressure strangers into doing what he said.’. ‘So stop asking me cause i wont be doing what you ask, end off’.
Himself: ‘ I am not a grown man sir, move your bag sir’

Train eventually stops at bishop Stortford, he starts to disembark not without asking me to move it once more. I of course reply with deadpan no and a urge that he develop some manners in future.  I should point out he had some lady with him who kept giving me daggers also. To stress my point further i stood up, look at my bag watch them get off.  Everyone in the carriage was staring at the confrontation horrified but some nice people gave me nods of encouragement which  i knew meant do not give into the stupid bastard.  Seriously, i am flabbergasted as to the gall of some people and what they think they can pressure other people into doing by means of intimidation. He should be ashamed of himself the little shit and clearly needs a lesson on curtsy and manners.

I Never

New years this year was spent like last year in london. That is a lot of years in one sentence right? Anyway, given last year (see again?) we wandered into central london for the much talked about firework display, it was decided a local house party was in order. Honest to god, that firework display may be pretty in person, but when it comes to being packed into a urban sidewalk amongst pissed up tourists and the over whelming smell of urination i will take a telly view in future thank you.  Not to mention my feet were killing me from all the walking. Free tubes on new years i hear you say, yes thats not much fecking good when the place is foaming at the gash with jumped up twats swigging there Lambrini straight from the bottle. 

Chris had a little shindig at his house which was nice and very calm. The worst thing that could be said about house parties, is that you get trashed extremely quickly.  Probably over all the time you save on travelling. Also the home measures don't help. ‘Ray you’re glass is half full of vodka’. Yes i am having a double’ i slur holding up a pint glass almost see through with vodka consistency with a scare of coke.  As with every house party i have been too since the age of 16, a drinking game was in order.  As the night went on the games became more depraved. Towards the end, i had the pleasure of participating in the longest running game of I NEVER i have ever played. It must of lasted more then an hour and half. This game is great when playing with strangers, as it alerts you to many of there mis-demeanours of there past and is a great ice breaker. To a certain point, after about 20 minutes you find yourself finding out increasingly horrific things about people you never wanted to know, and equally didn’t want them to know about yourself.  ‘ i have never, drank cider on a train, while getting a hand job next to a nun’ etc etc….

Best thing about a house party on new years? Getting home is a breeze, simply park yourself where you are throw a blanket over your chest and bobs your uncle, your home and ready for some sleepy time. If your lucky enough to have it in your house or be in a relationship with who's party it is, or  you just don’t know any boundaries, then you usually have a bed for the night. Double bonus.

Whats your New year Resolution?

Whats your new year resolution? Mine? Oh well its to viciously stab anyone in the ear who asks me what mine is, and yours? Don’t you just hate that fecking question.  Really. Why don’t you just ask. So how are you going to becoming a better person this year you fucktard eh? Going to give up your drinking habits, heard about you vomiting in poor buck tooth Tina’s handbag last week, you should give up the drink you slag. If i wanted to change anything about myself, il just do it.  I don’t need a change in a calendar year to tell me i have to do it. This year i am totes going to the gym, she said as she gorges on KFC dunked in chocolate. Yes you fat bitch i am sure you are.  Its the same principal when you see people post on Facebook. ‘The diet starts tomorrow’ Lol as they check themselves into the nearest Nando's. Please bitch eat your chicken in peace and don’t be clogging up my Facebook post like you do you’re own arteries. 

So not to worry people. I wont be asking yours. As in honesty who really gives a flying fuck? Everyone should just hope to get through the year as happily as can be expected, with few sorrows as possible  and no regrets.  Thats my aim. That and i’m going to start going to the gym more. like fuck i am.

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