Deck the halls with hand sanitiser,
Fa la la la la la la la la
Tis the season to wear face masks,
Fa la la la la Covid Christmas
According to our social media feeds, people seem to be falling into one of two camps vis-à-vis the impending festive season.
The first camp have used the generally depressing vibe of 2020 as a fabulous, tinsel-tipped excuse to dive headfirst into Christmas early and GO ALL OUT. The other group have been hanging steadfastly onto late-autumn vibes and avoiding the big ‘c’ word altogether until December hits.
Whichever camp you’ve fallen into so far (full Christmas grotto in the garden vs nary a mince pie crumb), we’re pretty sure we’ve all got one thing in common. Now that advent is officially upon us, we’d all like to deck the halls, celebrate with loved ones and get distinctly merry.
Of course, this year’s Covid Christmas is going to be rather different from the usual affair. Tier restrictions will be in place for the majority of the festive season, with just a five day reprieve from the 23rd–27th December. But hold your reindeers: even the five day Christmas period won’t be totally restriction free. Your Christmas bubble (which we will henceforth refer to as your Christmas bauble) needs to be an exclusive group of up to three households.
It doesn’t take a degree in epidemiology (now that’s a word we’ve become surprisingly familiar with this year) to appreciate that it’s not actually possible to negotiate a ceasefire with a highly-infectious virus. For many people, this will mean taking additional precautions over and above Christmas bauble allowances to keep themselves, their friends and their family members safe.
So, how is one actually supposed to enjoy the most wonderful time of the year in the middle of a pandemic?! We’ve put our red and white thinking caps on to come up with our best suggestions for making merry and being jolly despite the very obvious limitations.
Embrace the great outdoors
Yes, we are indeed aware that it’s much easier to embrace outdoor events when it’s warm and sunny and there’s very little chance of sleet or snow. However, beggars can’t be choosers and for the 99% of the country in tiers 2 and 3, outside socialisation is the only option.
Perhaps the best way forward here is to collectively embrace sleeping bags as festive fashion. (Added sequins and Christmas slogans would be optional, but very much encouraged). We’d also like to encourage hospitality businesses to start offering free refills… for hot water bottles.
Add hot drinks to every outdoor event
There’s something very comforting about a hot drink. Whether you’re enjoying a festive walk with friends or gathering round a garden fire pit, we recommend you always ensure everyone has a hot festive drink in hand. If the clocks are on your side, mulled wine would be the obvious choice. If not, we suggest hot chocolate (we don’t make the rules here, but we’re reliably informed that hot chocolate is far more in the spirit of the season than plain old tea and coffee).
Choose your baubles carefully
Though many millions of people are no doubt very grateful to be able to bubble with two other households to celebrate the big day… millions more are probably now embroiled in complicated family squabbles over who is joining whose bauble. As solicitors, we’re obviously no strangers to family disputes. Our suggestion is to approach these negotiations with all the caution and patience of a bomb disposal team.
Be wary of Christmas Zoom quizzes
Remember the brief-but-intense foray into Zoom quizzes back in the Spring? Well, we don’t wish to alarm you… but they’re coming back with (jingle) bells on. The occasional good-natured virtual quiz night will no doubt bring some seasonal joy, so long as you remember a) not to overcommit yourself and b) to stock up on Bailey’s well in advance.
Make the most of your space
We’ve all been spending a lot more time in our homes this year. You could consider Christmas an excellent reason to rearrange things and try something new. Now, we’re not necessarily suggesting that three rainbow Christmas trees and a twelve foot light-up Santa will cure your cabin fever… but then again, if you don’t try it how will you know?!
Of course, if you really can’t stand the sight of your own four walls anymore, you could always get on Rightmove. But if you do, please please – for the love of the shepherds and their flocks – DON’T ask us if you can complete before Christmas.
Despite our obvious reluctance to promise pre-Christmas completions, we will very much be business as usual over the coming weeks. Please get in touch with any questions you have and we’ll do our best to help (though we’re afraid we won’t be available to mediate arguments over who has to have Great Aunt Ethel in their bauble).