This time last year I was doing talks and demos at Hopetoun House. Just look at the photo I took this time last year. On the Sunday the show was abandoned due to the snow. It took us 3 hours to drive there, half an hour to pack up and a further 5 hours to drive home in the total white out conditions. It was an experience. It was an adventure.
This was the first year I wouldn’t be doing Hopetoun House in five years. There was no point really as they aren’t set up for demos due to the delicate nature of all the room interiors and lighting etc. Last year folks could hardly see the pine cones I was holding up as I waffled on about scenting them. So anyway I gave it a miss this year much to the disappointment of Number One (well only) Helper, my Head Honcho and Chief Elf – Idgy.
“But I love Hopetoun, I wish we were doing Hopetoun this year”, on and on it went. Luckily after her triumph as part of Sue’s Elf Service on her bear stand at Country Living last week, our Elf got hired by Sue again and got her wish to spend Saturday at Hopetoun.
Was our Elf satisfied with this promise of work with bears at location of her choice? No way jose! Oh no all week we had this line – “Oh it’s got to snow this weekend”, “Hoptoun was amazing in the snow last year”, “Oh please let it snow this time”.
She listened to weather reports like a man planning a Polar Expedition. She had half of her wardrobe earmarked for possible use in snow crisis. On Thursday there was reportedly snow in Inverness (bit of a distance from here), this was enough to send Idgy into high excitement and the search for another scarf.
We had sleet on Friday and that was almost unbearable for her. “It’s going to snow, it’s going to snow”.
Instead it was wet and windy as I dropped her at Sue and Allan’s house on Saturday morning at 8.30am ready for them all to drive through to Hopetoun for the day.
I drove on to Musselburgh, had a fabulous lunch with my darling Bro who looks as fit as a flea these days and was in great form. Visited Mum who was very frail but in chatty form. Then had a fabulous girly evening with Madge watching a silly movie (Bridesmaids), quaffing Chardonnay and reminiscing about our favourite cats. Tears were shed. Cats do that to you.
Yesterday I drove home on a Christmas shopping mission. Armed with a list I wondered if I could tick off everything and make it home in time for a flop out by the fire in the afternoon. My strategy worked. I hit the shops at an ungodly and unpopular hour and had the place to myself. Fairly whizzed round. Found everything I wanted and more besides, and tick, tick, tick went my pen on the list when I stopped at Starbucks for a cuppa.
So there we were. The weekend I would normally find myself selling at Hopetoun, found me buying and getting all my Christmas shopping done instead. And there was Idgy, happy as a clam getting to go to Hopetoun anyway and enjoy the Christmas fair. Okay so it wasn’t snowing and she didn’t get to see the place in all that magical glittery white finery that was last year. But she came home with loads of new coloured pencils, drawing pads and art books from Sue, information, inspiration and a bucket load of ideas for new drawings and animation. Oh my Elf enjoyed herself alright, even if the weather wasn’t quite right for her.
We are all hoping for a White Christmas……..