Christmas is here so forget Brexit and celebrate

Sandra Chapman
Sandra Chapman

At this time of the year most of us want there to be just Christmas on our minds. Even those who don’t like the big day much will still say they like the run up to it, the buzz in the shops and work places, the atmosphere and the prospect of not having to go to work for two days at least.

But here we are, the joy of the season darkened by Brexit which fills the newspapers and television news programmes daily.

Admit it, how much of it do we really understand? I read a lot on a daily basis and even I cannot get my head around all the issues, the problems and the prospect of the Prime Minister herself not understanding it all either.

Brexit Secretary David Davis ages by the day, Theresa gets more stooped by the minute, even Taoiseach Leo Varadkar must surely be worried about those ‘unique border difficulties’ as one writer described it last week. His predecessor Enda Kenny must be delighted he’s no longer responsible for seeing the country through the mangled mess. No doubt he’ll be sending Leo a Christmas card wishing him all the best.

When the snow arrived over the weekend and the temperatures plummeted I was convinced the Lord himself was trying to cool tempers and slow down the pace of the rhetoric, maybe even trying to get us back to the only thing that really matters at this time of the year – what size Christmas tree can be got into the average living room.

I had good reason to buy a bigger one than usual without consulting Himself who turned blue in the face trying to get it tapered to fit into the contraption that would hold it in place for the duration. The poor specimen was nearly hung, drawn and quartered as we worked to fit it in.

Finally it stood, pained but no doubt proud, signalling the start of Christmas in this house. Being bigger I soon realised I couldn’t reach the top myself, tall though I am, so the stepladder had to be extricated from under the contents of a garage that has recently seen total upheaval.

But, like the Brexiteers I persevered – is there a lesson in that for those at Westminster? – and I was pleased with myself as I ascended the steps to place the star at the top. Hours later – the dog demanded a walk which saw me doing battle with very icy footpaths – I was able to place the growing number of presents underneath it.

This annual ritual is unique for the satisfaction it engenders. It left me happily opening the boxes with the rest of the Christmas stuff. I had to decide what to decorate next and as I did so I thought of the dozens (at least) of amendments that anti Brexiteers are trying to force through at Westminster.

Reading the waffle they spout in the Chamber it made me wonder did these so called elected MPs understand democracy at all. The country voted to leave the EU and still we have a large rump of people determined we won’t be allowed to do any such thing.

Can Theresa hang in there until what the Tories think could save them from oblivion – the arrival of the no nonsense Ruth Davidson, head of the Conservative party in Scotland to fight a safe seat somewhere in London that could propel her into 10 Downing Street?

Ms Davidson declares that Jeremy Corbyn would be ‘‘eminently beatable’’ in the next election. London Tories will be delighted if the tell-it-as-it-is Scots lass’s prediction comes true.

I also think he’s beatable largely because I would hate to think that anyone would be daft enough to vote for someone who could turn out to be a modern day Stalin.

Rick Wilford, Professor of Politics at Queen’s University, writing in the Belfast Telegraph this week says he believes we are still in the foothills of the Brexit process, certainly no further on than base camp….. with the border issue by no means clear. So that’s it, a Christmas season dominated by Brexit with no good reason to be kissing anyone under the mistletoe this year.