Crisis for Castle Coop’s Christmas Carols!

Posted by in Castle Coop News | 2 comments

The agent and I are in crisis. Digby D, my faithful correspondent, has just emailed me. He writes, “According to the NY Times you are preparing for the worst storm in 60 years!  Hope you have the hatches well battened – assuming you survive everything unscathed, I look forward to LL’s report on it all.”




Gosh!! I knew the New York Times was a reputable journal but I didn’t realise its investigative reporters were this good!. I’m astonished that the news we are en crise here in Castle Coop seems to have travelled across the ocean. Help, Help, Help! The agent and I have been battening down the hatches like mad in the hope that we may weather our metaphorical storm but if the NY Times has cottoned on to it, that doesn’t sound too hopeful, does it? When something is printed in a newspaper, it always looks so authoritative.

This innocuous looking notice from the Chairman of the Village Hall is the cause of all the upset.



Sunday 15th December, Village Hall

6.00 pm to 7.00 pm




Christmas Carols, Mulled Wine and Mince Pies






Ox and Moose (at the Village Hall)

4.00-6.00 pm. Cash Bar

Do come along and bring friends and family.


The notice arrived on Wednesday and the agent and I had our first panic attack. Mulled Wine and Mince Pies sound very jolly as does a Boxing Day bar at the Ox and Moose but…  how could we have forgotten about the annual Christmas Carols in the Village Hall for which we are responsible for organising? How can we hold a Christmas Carol sing-along if… there’s no music?

I am afraid we have slipped up. Zut alors, how can the agent and I have been such complete ninnies?

The telephone line was red hot while we searched for a piano. Luckily stepped manfully up to the plate.

Behold the Beast:



Our next panic was to find a pianist to strum out the carols. Everyone who can play said no firmly.

Brown Owl said: ‘NO – FAR TOO BUSY making Christmas decorations with the Brownies’.

Trev the Rev said: ‘Certainly Not! Everyone gets quite enough of me standing up in front of them all the time, already’.

Lady Sebright said: ‘Unfortunately no; rather a lot of guests to lunch that day’.

Miss Pepperpot said: ‘Oh dear , what a shame no … alas a little touch of tennis elbow…..’.

Eventually, with nonchalant brilliance, the agent managed to persuade a village newcomer to agree to play half the programmed carols by confidently insisting it would be an excellent way to meet all Castle Coopians. He also threw in a pint as a bribe.  How clever is that! Hurrah! What a relief. As for the remaining carols… oh dear.  We need that little Dutch boy who so gallantly  plugged up the hole in the dyke wall with his finger during a tempest.

In the meantime, just until he steps forward, we are studying ‘Teach yourself how to play the piano’ manuals, 24/7. It is uphill work, je peux vous dire. The agent is alternately cast down in the depths of despair or buoyant with enthusiasm and gung-ho spirit; I am just depressed.

Here is the carol I am currently going pie-eyed over. I have taken care to recreate the fuzzy focus so that you can see it through my eyes, as it were…:

piano music3

It doesn’t sound as it should do. There are long pauses while I try and work out where the notes are. Perhaps if I make a frightful mess of everything , I could roar with laughter and say,

“I am playing all the right notes but not necessarily in the right order”. It worked for Eric Morecambe.

I am very anxious about it all. It will be excruciating to play badly in public. Lady Egality gave me tea and sympathy this afternoon and offered to accompany me on the treble recorder to deflect attention from my bishes. If any of you would like to volunteer to play, ‘God Rest You Merry Gentlement’, please email me toute de suite. If alas, geography does not permit this kind gesture, I thank you anyway for all your supportive thoughts.

Yours in crisis,

LLH signature



  1. But why is the agent being reticent. Surely the Chairman of the Village Hall would be delighted to lead the carol singing over the accompaniment of the fine Les Paul guitar that was presented to the agent in celebration of his birthday.

    • I shall suggest to the agent immediately that Castle Coop needs a ramped up version of Silent Night.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *