(A post about one of the virtues of dark winter nights – the excuse for the family to play board games and cards.)
Make the most of any late autumn sunshine, because now the clocks have gone back, we’re on the slippery slope towards the dark nights of the festive season.
“Sunshine – what sunshine?” I hear you cry. Optimist that I am, even I’ve given up on it this year. With uncharacteristic pessimism, I put my summer clothes into hibernation before the end of September. My cotton Union Jack maxi-dress, an investment in 2012’s patriotic occasions, never even made it out of the wardrobe over the summer. It was just too cold.
But I’m not letting our disappointing summer weather get me down. I know a way to ensure that no matter how sunless and cold the winter is, it will be a happy one in our household: I’ll hit the games cupboard.
Situated next to the wood-burner in the middle of our living room is a huge stash of old-fashioned board games, playing cards and jigsaws. I have fond memories of learning such games from my beloved grandmother, so just the thought of a round of Scrabble gives me a warm glow, even if the wood-burner’s not alight. I love losing myself in a jigsaw (preferably a children’s one so it’s not too hard). I’m always astonished how, mid-puzzle, my subconscious takes over and I find myself slotting a piece into place before I’ve consciously realised that I’ve found the right place for it. Weird, but magical ly meditative.
My playing card collection is also a source of happy memories. I bring back packs with scenic views from places I’ve been on holiday, so sitting by my fireside, a game of Patience transports me to New York or Greece or Hong Kong. And sun.
So forget the wonders of the Wii . Never mind the excitement of the X-Box. Give me old –fashioned game technology any day and I’m happy. Cosy winter evenings, here I come!
This post was originally written for the Hawkesbury Parish News, October 2012.
4 thoughts on “Goodbye Sun, Hello Fun”
My question is, where are you going to wear the cotton Union Jack maxi dress next year?! p.s. Scrabble almost ruined my marriage.
Good question, Laura – and I’m stumped on that one! I know what you mean about the Scrabble – my husband and I spent a lot of time playing backgammon for drachmas on our first holiday together in Greece, where there’s a set in every coffee shop and bar, and it’s a miracle we still went on to get married! Had to give up playing for money when Greece adopted the Euro instead of the drachma – it became far too costly to the loser (i.e. me!)
Have to agree with you on good old fashIoned fun! We have our stash in the spare bedroom ready when we decide to turn OFF the tv and the outside world. Cell phones go onto vibrate. Hot chocolate and snacks ready. The only drawback is the leg cramps from sitting on the floor at the coffee table. Bring it on!
Oh, yes I forgot to mention the essential games players’ snacks – good thinking, Debbie! 🙂