…And so there are to be two Noëls in this leap year

Blimey, 2005 already, eh? Finished the turkey sandwiches at last, gone half-blind on cheap sherry, turned up to work to a shiny new desk diary. What? Not got one?

You want to have a word with that PA of yours, particularly since 2004 was so short. There’s a lot of catching up to do, and the accounting system’s gone to pot. At least you smell nice. And your skin’s so soft!

If yule hadn’t caught the (snow) drift, cosmetics company Lush unilaterally declared last Thursday to be Christmas, to mark the official launch of the company’s festive range.

Noël expense was spared for the festivities: Christmas trees were set up outside the Carnaby Street store, and the pavement was sprayed with a mock blizzard. Invitations were Santa out, requesting the presents of the great and good at an evening party, and supplies of Mc(Nati)Vitie’s Rover biscuits laid on. The party went off with a swing: a holly satisfactory time was had by all.

And the weather on “Christmas Day”? Rain, dear.

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