New Year’s Eve

“What’s for lunch today, Mum?” I was hungry, as usual.

“Left-overs, again, but I’m making mash to go with it.”  Mum busied herself in the kitchen.

It was the warmest room in the house, a big table in the centre and the place we all congregated.  Talking, playing, helping out but enjoying our time together.  Too cold to play upstairs in our bedrooms, too early to light the fire in the sitting room, that didn’t happen until after dinner.

I was drawing with my new colouring pencils.  Dad was peeling the potatoes, helping.  Sister was painting her nails, with her new varnish and brother was talking at anyone who would listen.

“So, this year could we do something different tonight?” he asked.

“Like what?” Mum asked.

“Well,” continued my brother “I thought we could play games in the kitchen after dinner, while Dad lights the fire and when it’s warm enough, we could all get changed into party clothes and meet up for a New Year’s Eve Party.”

“That’s not fair!” I complained “That means that I will miss out on everything.”

“No” replied my brother, “That’s the point, as you are 10, nearly 11.  You could stay up with us and see the New Year in.”

I was delighted, but waited with bated breath, until my Mother agreed to the plan.

“Daddy” I pleaded “Can we play music and have dancing?”

I was so excited at finally becoming grown-up and being allowed to stay up past midnight.

Shame really, as the excitement became too much for me and I fell asleep laying across Dad’s lap about 10.30, mid game of charades.  I never lived it down.


277 words – Sandy Bryson


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