This Christmas (2017) will be the 26th Christmas Day in succession on which we have provided full-service Christmas pet sitting cover. It is by tradition the busiest day of our pet sitting year. For us, the advent to Christmas is as hectic as it is for anyone else. The traffic is snarled and steaming under the street lamps. Everything is last minute. Everyone is in a queue. And we join them but we aren’t queuing for the shops. We don’t need to buy anything. Instead, we are scurrying about the city picking up keys and taking late bookings from desperate pet owners. Just doing our best to keep on top of it all.
Pet Sitting on Christmas Day
Then with an early start, the busiest day is upon us. We fill our key-chains, gather up piles of Instruction Sheets and set off. And it is silent. The roads are empty. No one is going to work, no one is shopping, we have the city to ourselves. And so we go from house to house (discreetly – because we never advertise on our vehicles), quietly looking after our charges, reading your little Christmas notes and just enjoying the peace of Christmas Day.
By the evening, with only a few calls left to make, the taxis are out, the roads are a little busier – you need to keep an eye out for drivers who have had one too many. And then it’s done. Go home, prep down. Prep up for Boxing Day and pour out a big glass of wine. That’s Christmas, the same every year and, since the children have long left home – not even a tree.
If that all sounds rather bleak to you I am not about to help matters when I tell you that this busy winter workload continues until around the third of January. Only when the schools go back can we relax for a short time before the skiing season starts up.
Now, this will be news to you no doubt but the first Saturday after the schools’ Spring term begins is known as Makers’ Day. This is a celebration for those who have worked over the festive holidays to make Christmas happen. It’s non-religious, but in every other way it is the full ‘Christmas’ works, all of the presents and a banquet with family and friends gathered round. As a rule, I will book the day off – no pet sitting at all for me on that day.
Preparations for Makers’ Day don’t need to begin until the New Year. The pre-Christmas queues are now queues for the returned goods counter. Conversely, celebrators of Makers’ Day are now shopping in earnest. We have about a week to get ready. UPS isn’t run off its feet so online orders arrive in good time. No one is fighting us for the shelves – newly stocked with this season’s offer, (and still quite a lot of stuff in the sales).
The conversion, some years ago, from Christmas Day to Makers’ Day was a painful one. The pressure to conform to the de facto commercial version of a celebration is enormous, almost irresistible. But once made, it afforded (my family at least), a wonderful sense of release. And so this year, and I hope for many years to come, I will be one of those who helps to make your Christmas happen. But once the Christmas pet sitting is done – boy will I be looking forward to Makers’ Day!