Twas the night before Christmas

Mama, being as anti-social as my good self, did all her Christmas shopping online. Nice and easy, a few clicks, and voilà, jobs a goodun.

3 to 5 business days later the good folk of ‘Menkind’ had still not delivered. Mama contacted them, electronically of course, and received a reply to say their company had a been busy yet they would upgrade Mama’s order which would be dispatched forthwith and she would indeed receive her goods the very next day.

The very next day came and went, and still no goods had been delivered. Mama contacted the poor underpaid staff once more yet did not receive a reply. But this was Christmas, everyone was busy, so Mama waited patiently, for one entire hour, on the phone, on hold, until a kindly assistant answered. Now this unfortunate lady had been dealing with complaints all day long so Mama was kindly and once again requested a delivery status. The young lady said the goods would be sent the very next day and Mama would receive her Christmas presents on Christmas Eve. Mama thanked the nice lady yet said she would never again shop with their company, the nice young lady said she would not either. That night Mama received an email to say her goods would not be dispatched and would she like a refund. Mama requested a refund.

It was now Christmas Eve and with only wrapping paper purchased, yet nothing to wrap, Mama went to Bognor Regis to indulge in some last minute Christmas goodwill to spend some hard earned cash and enjoy the festive spirit.

Bognor Regis may well seem an unusual shopping trip destination, but hey, Mama was also going to visit Nannie who lives in the area so it kinda made sense.

The lovely seaside resort of Bognor Regis used to have a poor reputation, Mama would like to point out that this is in fact nonsense, Bognor Regis is not some shabby second rate seaside town, it is in fact the tenth circle of hell.

Having traipsed into every single shady looking shop, apart from one which looked a little unusual and may just conceal some hidden gem waiting to be purchased as a unique and quirky Christmas gift yet the doorway was blocked with some intimidating looking characters, Mama gave up and took shelter in a bleak cafe to get out of the rain.

The place was half empty yet the waitress, who actually looked remarkably like Morticia Adams, guided Mama to a seat rammed right up against another table where two lovely, yet a bit whiffy, older people sat. Mama ordered a cup of tea and pretended to study the menu knowing full well she would not be eating anything but felt strangely obliged to at least pretend. To take her mind off the sound of false teeth clattering around a dodgy burger Mama sipped her tea noisely and concentrated instead on the music blaring from the cafe’s sound system which was playing ‘It’s the most wonderful time of the year’.

Sighing deeply Mama took her phone out of her pocket for further distraction and saw she had received yet another email from that wonderful company Menkind with whom she had purchased Christmas and subsequently cancelled. Bizarrely they had sent Mama a goodwill Christmas message full of hearty cheer to inform her that Christmas would in fact be delivered after all and would arrive today! Ta dah!

Mama paid her bill and left the clientele who were by now picking sesame seeds out of their aforesaid mentioned dentures, and no longer cared about the pouring rain and gale force winds, and decided before visiting wonderful Nannie she would be brave enough to take a peek in the only interesting shop Bognor Regis has to offer. The odd characters hanging around the entrance had disappeared and the goodies inside looked appealing. Mama approached and realised the shop was now in fact closed.

Hey ho, the handmade presents made by the grandchildren were delivered to Nannie and all was well with the world. Mama drove home, avoiding the ‘Police incident, road closed’ Bognor Regis road network and arrived back in sunny Rustington. No delivery had been made. Mama, now wearing her glasses, checked her phone once more and followed the link to DHL and entered the delivery number and pressed enter. DHL responded saying ‘no item found’. The huge and enormously successful Menkind company had messed up yet again.

So, no little quirky gifts would be unwrapped in the morning, no stockings would be filled. Yet the moral of the story … who cares, Menkind may be shocking at business, but mankind don’t need a bunch of materialistic rubbish to enjoy Christmas. Together as a family we will eat, drink and be merry. And be grateful for every little thing that we already have. And young Mr Moussaka, accompanied by Mama, will visit the old folks home where our sister will be working, to spread a bit of happiness to those alone at Christmas.

Final note. In the words of The Pogues, Fairytale of New York, a little message for money making MenKind from my rather marvellous family to yours.

Happy Christmas you arse.

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Author: ouzothegreek

I am a three legged Greek street dog called Ouzo. I got run over when I was very young and injured my leg, some people caught me and took me to the vets where my leg was amputated. Once I had healed I was returned to a life on the streets where I visited feeding stations set up by the charity Greek Animal Rescue. These kind people together with another charity, Holly Farm Canine Centre, raised funds to have me brought over to England. And this is where my story begins.

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