James Marston: What did people drink before Prosecco?

James Marston Father Christmas

James Marston Father Christmas - Credit: Contributed

Right. Thank goodness that’s all over. I’m right stuffed with turkey – not a favourite meat at any time of year – and if I go to another pastry-based buffet served with a “nice and light” Prosecco (what did people drink before Prosecco?) I think I might go insane.

I don’t want to sound curmudgeonly but isn’t it a relief Christmas is only once a year? I wonder if we couldn’t celebrate the birth of the divine incarnate just once every two years? Don’t get me wrong; I made an effort – well, I put up a tree and even made a Yule log – it’s just that you soon get bored once the excitement of Downton Abbey is out of the way, don’t you?

Thankfully I wasn’t forced to play too many games, so I can’t really complain too much. And today I shall be enjoying the solitude of my small flat with sea views (distant), away from the hurly-burly of the shops – can you imagine the riots if they weren’t open? – and thinking about what presents to take back and which ones to re-gift. In Icklingham, where I grew up, there is much excitement as we get used to what is being described by the community as the “new road” – the A11 through Elveden. Well, no longer through, more round, as it happens. Now, after nearly 30 years of waiting and £105million, Norwich is that bit quicker to get to and, according to the powers that be, congestion should be much reduced not just for Barton Mills but also for Brandon – I guess we’ll see in the summer.

Perhaps more worryingly I’ve got to an age when a leisurely drive up the new road, to have a look, is an exciting prospect. Obviously in 2015 I shall have some resolutions but it’s hard to find anything new. I wondered if I might try being ruder to people, more selfish and more aggressive behind the wheel, but I suspect everyone else has been having the same idea. I suspect I’ll stick to what I know and try to slim down and stop smoking. They usually work for me.