– Those Christmas days, those always endless days, started way back when the leaves were still clinging to the trees; the seeds of Christmas 1984 were sown when the Great Universal Autumn/Winter catalogue thumped through the front door, loaded with Lego and train sets and Casio watches, waterproof to 5 metres. Through the autumn and darkening months, those well-thumbed pages were taken to bed and worshipped.
I looked out through my criss-cross bedroom window on that Christmas Eve morning; that boringly dull morning that never really felt like Christmas Eve. The houses behind ours stood staid and solemn, smoke slowly and silently rising from their chimneys. And the old steel streetlight that would light up my bedroom at night stood cold and hard; waiting. The great autumn storms had long rolled through, leaving the still churned soil kissed with frost and our trees naked as bones. From the pigeon hut in the garden opposite ours, the grey and blue doves took to the skies as if it was any other day, swooping and cutting through the ice clouds, oblivious to Christmas; ignorant of festivities –
The book is beautifully illustrated by Swansea artist Gemma Elizabeth Collins.