It’s the time of year again when various organizations send out their ‘gift’ catalogues. I don’t want, as it is still only September and I don’t like to even think about it until after bonfire night, to mention the dreaded C word yet, but this is what their catalogues are aimed at. We receive several of these catalogues each year mainly from the charities we have supported in the past like the PDSA and Cats Protection. We also receive the glossy and useful ones from Lakeland (there is no way on earth I can walk past a Lakeland shop and not go in) and Scotts of Stow because we’ve bought from them before. This week though, heralded the arrival of my two absolute favourites.
First up is The Cat Gallery catalogue from that super shop in York which we have to visit whenever we go there. Secondly, my ultimate favourite, I think, is the RSC one full of all things Shakespeare. Nestled in its pages alongside the usual mugs, coasters and T- shirts are wondrous items like a pop-up Globe theatre book (with play books and press out characters) and little wooden dolls you can dress up (clothes included), leather bound notebooks and embroidered cushions. The trouble is that these two publications can make you very selfishly order things for yourself, completely forgetting about the seasonal spirit of giving. Last year I ordered my ‘Double, double toil and trouble, fire burn and cauldron bubble’ tea towel – complete with lovely cackling witches, the year before my ‘He hath eaten me out of house and home’ apron decorated with self satisfied cat and fish bones, both, sadly, no longer available in the 2006 catalogue, but still much used and loved around here. Also, decorating our fridge are two magnets bearing the quotations ‘Where is the life that late I led?’ and ‘Would I were in an alehouse in London’ – indeed! Hmm, I wonder who would like a pop-up Globe theatre this year?