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Twelve Days & Almost A Year: A Christmas Letter

By Cynthia Replogle
Dear friends,
Happy Holidays! Wow, it has been a year for the record books for us. First was the big move in January. Our place in the city felt too snug after my T.L. got creative with last year’s Christmas gifts, and then there was that unfortunate business with the zoning board. (Nosey neighbors are so tiresome, am I right?!) We found a lovely place in the country, with a huge house (the servant’s quarters have their own entrance), a big red barn (birds in the loft, cows below), a pond (great for swimming), and best of all, room to roam!
I can’t say the move went off without a hitch (now I know how a general coordinating troop movements feels, ha ha!) but after 11 billion U-haul trips we all got over to the new place. The Pear Tree was the hardest thing to move. The Partridge simply refused to budge out of it. We tried tempting her with her favorite weeds and even dandelions to no avail, but then my T.L. had the bright idea to ask one of the Lords to leap up and grab her. Success!
Enough about January! We’re almost through the year now and settled in. Well, there are still a few boxes to unpack, I admit. Maybe more than a few. My T.L. is doing his part, but really you can’t blame us for being a bit behind, can you? I mean, just try to imagine how much time it takes every single day to manage a staff of 50 and care for eight cows and 23 birds. Which reminds me, does anyone need eggs? We’ve got eggs out the wazoo. The Geese are popping them out like it’s their job, and the French Hens try to keep up with half the staff. My T.L.’s been making eggs for breakfast for the last 360+ days, bless his heart, but pancakes (blueberry, not pear) would be nice once in a while. So please drop by anytime for a carton or 10 of delicious farm-fresh eggs. And a basket of pears.
Our Summer Solstice party was really something. Drummers drumming, Pipers piping, Lords a-leaping and you should’ve seen those Ladies dancing under the Pear Tree! It was just like the old times at Christmas, only much, much warmer. The Calling Birds and Turtle Doves flew around and fanned everyone with their wings, which helped a bit, but after perhaps a little too much mead, most of us went for a refreshing dip in the pond. The Swans didn’t take kindly to the night-time intrusion, and I’ll never forget the sight of a dripping Piper being chased from the water by a squawking Swan!
I had a bit of a scare in October when one of my Gold Rings slipped down the drain in the west wing’s third floor powder room sink. I have four rings just like it, but they’re all precious because my T.L. gave them to me, you know? Happily one of our Maids used to be a plumber, and she got it out of there in a jiffy. Yay!
Well, those are a few highlights from this year. When you come by for eggs and pears, maybe you’ll let me bend your ear. If it’s after Christmas, I can tell you what my T.L. got me this time! So far I see only one medium-sized box with my name on it under the tree. I’m hoping it’s a pair of noise-cancelling headphones.
Cheers from us all!

Cynthia Replogle, a freelance writer and patent agent, moved to the Central Coast for love earlier this year. She writes articles for online publications, including GrindTV, Mpora Action Sports, and Drift Surfing. Cynthia volunteers with Surfrider, and is writing a young adult fantasy novel about merfolk and selkies. She is a member of SLO Night Writers, for writers at all levels in all genres. Find them online at slonightwriters.org.

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