Hello and Merry Christmas Eve to all of our newsletter subscribers! Happy Holidays, Season's Greetings, and on and on to cover all the different ways we celebrate at this time of year, globally. You're all included in our wish for peace, joy, happiness, good looking antique trunks and wonderful leathers, world-wide. Did we cover everybody? I think so.
Not sure if you noticed but Christmas is tomorrow. I know this to be fact because I can't find my dog. Miss Indie the Intelligent, our amazing black lab, hasn't been seen since last evening. She's not lost or anything; it's just that our daughters are back in Maine for a few days, and apparently they scratch ears better upstairs here at the house than do those of us who hang out on the first floor. Can't find the dog? That means the galliwags are home, and that's where you'll find The Dog. Makes it feel like Christmas.
Looks like here in central Maine we can expect some more snow today, but our snow has been in place for a while now; White Christmas, guaranteed. Makes it nice. We'll be heading toward town later today for a few last minute gifts, as each of us finalizes our plans for what we want to give. If you've been on our newsletter list for a while you may recall that I don't spend much time on what I want to give - the ideas always seem to come along rather naturally. I spend too much time thinking about what I want to receive, or, to be more clear, what I hope to blue blazes I DON'T receive. You know, the Annual List of Stuff I Don't Want for Christmas. What? You thought I'd forgotten? Bah.
Been busy hereabouts, thanks to you, our customers, and we sure do appreciate it. Thanks for your business this year, and for the part you play in helping our little online empire continue to expand. 2016 has brought us a bunch of changes here at BrettunsVillage, including a soon-to-be-launched new website that will make transactions with us much easier, especially if you're outside of the USA or need express shipping within the USA. We're looking at a mid-late January launch date right now - I'll let you know. We also purchased a whopper of a barn in Livermore, Maine, smack in the center of the part of Livermore that's known as Brettuns Village. It's not a coincidence - this is where a couple of us started this business back in 1994. So now, BrettunsVillage.com will be in Brettuns Village. It just seems right, don't you think? It'll take us a while to get moved - probably during one of our four weeks of summer so that we can enjoy slapping mosquitoes whilst we lug boxes to and fro.
OK I can't stand it anymore so here goes: Did you buy Star Shower Motion? What were you thinking? Just one thing to plug in? Just one light bulb? Where's the fun in that? They're not truly Christmas lights if they don't involve some mid-level cursing and hurling. You know, whipping the old holiday light strings around because they won't come on, and that's because you failed to find the one bulb out of 14,000 of the little buggers that has one of those hair-like filaments they call 'wires' out of place by about half of a millimeter. Cursing and hurling. Two essential parts of the holiday season. Star Shower Motion? No thanks, not for me.
This next item I'm going to mention is a weird one, because I don't think any of you were going to give me My Pillow this year anyway. I can't decide if it's the annoying chorus line singing "My pillooooooow - dot - com' or the way that guy's arms just won't stay still for a split second. I'll tell you one more thing - I'm not so sure the National Sleep Federation exists at all. Maybe it has just one member, and his arms won't stay still? Don't get me this for Christmas, OK? I sleep just fine, which may have more to do with the work day hours around this clam stand than it does with whatever pillow I manage to hit at the end of the day.
Here's a fast one: Cologne. For some reason this seemed pretty important to me back in the 1970s, but somewhere along the line it hit me that I don't splash on Bait (as my buds and I used to call it) ever (evah in Maine). Look, just about everybody has an allergy or sensitivity so I don't think it'll be too much longer before you'll get arrested for wearing that stuff out in public anyway, so leave this off the shopping list. No Stink-um, as my Dad used to call it.
You wanted to give me what this year? Wall to wall carpeting for the new house? Look, that's wicked nice of you, but no, no thanks. Hardwood floors for us, because I made the mistake of looking at photos online of what dust mites look like. That's a horrific looking beast right there, something Yukon Cornelius would lead around on a chain. Out with the carpet, in with the hardwood, and poof - all of your free time issues are solved. You'll be sanding and varnishing floors annually. It's great exercise.
Listening to much Christmas music lately? I guess we all have our favorites. I like listening to Louis Armstrong's Christmas album, some Ella Fitzgerald now and then. Andy Williams. Classics, mostly. What I do not like and would rather not receive in gift form would be any modern remake of the classic holiday songs where the singer feels compelled to 'jazz it up' or 'make it more fun' and if they utter that 'Ha!' sound even once in the song they're done. No thank YOU.
Now that this letter sounds like one big complaint I might as well throw in a couple of quick hitters: Sausage with cheese inside? No. More election news? No. Onward. Reading books on some sort of electronic device? No. I like books - the way the pages are bound, the cover, the forward, the information about the publisher. I like lugging a book around. A network inside my vehicle. No. When I drive it may surprise you to know that I actually watch the road and the other drivers and that moose down in the swale and the frost heave just ahead and that car with the Massachusetts license plate that somehow ended up in the hayloft of the main barn over to Norlands. I don't need to surf the web or buy new camouflage waders on eBay in the middle of my daily commute. Nope.
OK, enough whining. I realize I haven't left you with much time to go get me something anyway. Even if you fought the crowds today you'd have to drive it here yourself. That sure would be nice of you. We'll be here today on the shores of Brettuns Pond, which is covered now with almost a foot of ice so we'll be out there traipsing around this afternoon, letting the dog run, trying not to slip on the ice and end up bumpkin over teakettle. Dog would love to see you.
Come on up.
Merry Christmas from Brettuns Village, and may you find those moments this holiday that stay with you for the rest of your days. I'm hoping that you get to spend time with family, friends, neighbors, colleagues. And a dog.
Animal Welfare Officer
Upcountry in Maine
The new digs