It’s that time of year again: streets are glowing with warm, sparkly Christmas lights, people are busy making plans, buying presents and generally having a fun and friend filled time. You? You’re bobbing away on a boat in the middle of the Atlantic.
So while it feels like ‘everyone else’ on the planet is spending the entire month of December slurping glühwein, having memorable moments in front of open, log fires, and munching on mince pies, we’re at least 1500 nm miles away from all the festive fun. With people that are not your mum, your dad or your besties, without a tree, much-loved classics on tellie or the accepted daily drinkathons that spell C.H.R.I.S.T.M.A.S.
Instead, you’ll be cinderella-ing: serving guests swanky drinks or driving them ashore in the tender. Sure, they’ll be plenty of late nights but only because you’re still clearing up after dinner or ironing the boss’s underpants. When you sign up for ‘superyachting’ you also sign up for working your socks off while everyone else you know is having snow ball fights and an absolutely fabulous time. You actually know so because you continuously see the evidence on Facebook.
So, this blog is a shout out to you guys. Yachting’s guys and girls who won’t be dusting snow flakes off thick knitted scarves, opening up big ribboned gifts or looking forward to that amazing roof top party on the 31st.
‘Cos between you and I the festive season is actually not as you so fondly remember it. It’s actually a bit of an overblown mess.
Here are a few reasons why:
The holiday period gives you the go-ahead to slouch around doing nothing, for days. Which sounds like heaven, until you realise the biggest issue with lolling around doing nothing for a week is that it’s immensely boring.
The entire month of December fixes you up with a perfectly balanced diet of fats, sugars and killer processed starches, all within easy reach of that sink-in sofa. You can keep your eyes glued to the telly while you simply stretch your hand out to one of the many bowls filled with crisps, chocolates and great quantities of guilt. You can’t see the last-mentioned, but they’re there. Oh, yes, they’re there.
Families are wonderful. Unless you’re forced to spend endless days with them. Behind the forced smiles and strained conversation there’s a whirlpool of anger and fear. This is why paper hats were created: to lessen the explosive tension of family members cooped up in the same space for days on end for the first (and probably only) time that year.
Although it’s usually less stressful seeing your extended relatives, what replaces this is monster servings of boredom. But don’t think that they don’t actually feel the same way. Your father-in-law isn’t snoozing on the sofa because he’s tired from having worked a lot lately, it’s so he doesn’t have to talk to Aunt Betty.
Having to endure crowded streets, people bumping into you with their shopping bags, grumpy shop assistants and ‘Simply having a wonderful Christmas time’ on the brain to boot, only so you get to open one of two types of gifts: the well-meaning but not wanted and the shamelessly inattentive. Oh how good would it have been to be given socks! At least, you actually use these.
Have no doubt that the presents you give will also be absolute pants. Unless you really did make your uncle happy with that hilarious ‘novelty’ mug (you did not).
‘Forced frivolity’ can take on multiple forms over the holiday period. Like the embarrassing “and now?” moment as everyone collapses on the couch after a painfully large Christmas dinner. Then there’s the gooey forced frivolity gushing from the TV, so much so that it hits you Scrooge was right. The Before-Scrooge that is.
Generally speaking, NYE is standing in line in the freezing cold so you can buy overpriced tickets to get into clubs you normally wouldn’t want to go to. If you’re spending it at someone’s house we’re talking cyclone-strength forced frivolity. This is, after all, meant to be the best night of 2015!
So think about that while you’re on board for Christmas. Before you know it, it will be the start of January. A fresh new year in which you won’t have to lose any weight because you didn’t put any on running around looking after twelve guests for two weeks. Added bonus is the big tip you got from that charter guest allowing you to splash out on something you really wanted. A weekend rolling around in a hammock on a stunning tropical island listening to reggae and slurping piña coladas perhaps?
Take that Facebook friends!